Monday, November 7, 2011

Encounter with a Heron at the Geremonty Marsh (OWT)

1. GBHE at Geremonty-kab Great Blue Heron at the Geremonty Marsh 10-18-11

Last month my friend, Kathryn Kelley came to visit me from Utah. Kathryn has never been to New England before, so I was very excited to have her coming to visit, especially in autumn, when the foliage is so beautiful. She arrived late on Tuesday and within two hours we were sitting at a seafood restaurant enjoying her first new England Seafood. Since a rainstorm was predicted for the next morning, we got up early and headed to Salem, NH to do some errands. But, before shopping, we went birding at the Geremonty Marsh!

2. Kelley at kelley-kab Kathryn Kelley in front of the door to the Kelley Library

It had never occurred to me until Kathryn came with me that the nearby library has the same name as she does! It’s even spelled correctly! So, we just had to take this shot!

3. fall foliage-kab The trees around the marsh were in all their glory!


4. BCCH-kab Black-capped chickadees seemed to be everywhere!


5. DOWO at Geremonty-kab Downy woodpeckers climbed the dead trees in search of food.


6. COYE-kab And along the fenceline we found this cute little female Common Yellowthroat, my first sighting of this species at the Geremonty Marsh!

7. NOMO-kab With the cool autumn temperatures the cattails have started to turn brown. A Northern Mockingbird clings to a branch as if bracing for the coming cold.

But by far the most astonishing thing that we encountered that day was a Great Blue Heron standing on the sidewalk between the fence to the school track and field and the border of the marsh.

8. GBHE-kab First of all, I was surprised that it did not fly away as soon as it saw us. We were only about 50 feet from it.


9. GBHE-kab Then, to our utter astonishment, the bird started walking closer!


10. GBHE-kab 


12.Walking closer-kab 


14.even closer-kab the puddle-kab School field to the left, marsh to the right.


16. close enough-kab Finally the bird just stopped and stared!



17. GBHE-kab Great Blue Heron Standing in puddle 1-19-11

The heron never moved away in the 20 minutes we were there. We were the ones who finally moved on and continued our walk around the marsh. By the time we left it had started to sprinkle. By the time were were done shopping, it was a deluge. It rained hard for the rest of the day, and the next morning was gray and foggy but by noon the skies cleared and we had great weather for the rest of Kathryn's visit. There are 6 New England States: Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island. In less than 18 hours Kathryn had already been in 2 of them. I wondered how many I could take her to before she had to return to the Rocky Mountain west!


Our World

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Birds Seen at the Geremonty Marsh 10-19-11:

18. heron-kab

  1. Turkey Vulture
  2. Great Blue Heron
  3. Ring-billed Gull
  4. Mourning Dove
  5. Downy Woodpecker
  6. Hairy Woodpecker
  7. Blue Jay
  8. American Crow
  9. Black-capped chickadee
  10. Tufted Titmouse
  11. European Starling
  12. American Robin
  13. Northern Mockingbird
  14. Common Yellowthroat
  15. Song Sparrow
  16. white-throated Sparrow
  17. Northern Cardinal
  18. Red-winged Blackbird
  19. Common Grackle
  20. House Finch

If you have the time, take a stroll over to Birding is Fun to read my new poem, The Sea Gull’s Gulp and see photos of the gull we encountered in Gloucester, MA. You won’t believe what it swallowed whole!


  1. As you know, this is very unusual behaviour for a GBH. I swear they fly away from me when I'm amile away and they hear rumour that I'm in the neighbourhood. Congratulations on the beautiful photos.

  2. Hi Kathie

    You got some mighty nice shots of the Heron. I liked the colours in the Downy Woodpecker shot as well.


  3. Wow, what a poser. Those heron shots are awesome, especially with the puddle reflection.

  4. great post Kathie - love the shots of the heron with reflection.

  5. Wow, great images & very nice close-up of heron :)

  6. Mamma Zen, thank you!

    A scattering, yes, I do know and I was so surprised! this is what I love about birding, the serendipity of it all!

    Guy, you have an eye for the beauty in Nature and a soul to write poetry as well!

    Gaelyn, I was so pleased though I do wish I knew how to better balance the colors and the light. I still have so much to learn.

    Dan, thanks! You would love this place!

    Cynthia, thank you!

  7. kathie!! WoW!! the reflection shots with the heron are just beautiful!! and i especially like the little yellowthroat on the fence! the colors in that shot are so bright. i love it!! and the little downy...they're tough to get good pic's of...they move so fast!
    thanks for lifting my spirits with these terrific pictures!!


Welcome to my nest! I hope you will enjoy spending time here with me and the birds. Thank you for your comments. I will try to get back to you as soon as I get back from counting more birds.