The photo galleries on this website contain thousands of reader-submitted photos. No species is depicted in more images than big, beautiful Great Blue Heron, North America’s most widespread heron. The pictures show it flying over water, carrying sticks for nests, nabbing prey, and caring for young. In many shots, the bird stands on long legs in shallow water or on rocks, loafing or waiting for a meal.
The photo above was taken by Lori Martin of Berlin, Maryland. She posted it to our galleries in June. Martin, who taught physical education in public schools in Maryland for 24 years until retiring a few years ago, started taking photos three years ago with her cell phone, and today she never leaves home without her point-and-shoot digital camera. She enjoys visiting Assateague National Seashore and wildlife refuges to photograph beaches, birds, and other natural subjects.
Her picture shows why Great Blue Heron is such a popular subject. Martin tells us she was driving in the town of Ocean Park when the bird landed next to a nearby pond, so she parked and walked closer. As the heron popped its head up among the rich green leaves and deep blue blossoms of pickerel rush, Martin fired off frame after captivating frame.
Martin used the following equipment and settings to take the photograph:
Camera: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ70
Lens: Built-in 60x zoom at focal length 55.4mm
Settings: 1/250, f/5.6, ISO 100, 0 EV
More photos from our readers
A version of this article appeared in the October 2014 issue of BirdWatching magazine. Subscribe.