I photographed this Pileated Woodpecker in Florida. I think what I like most about these beautiful birds is their size. It is a pleasure to see them weave around trees. Their loud call always give me a thrill. They are truly kings (and queens) of the forest.
The King Rail is another bird that is exciting to see. I have only ever seen two in my life. They are shy marsh birds and stay in the safety of marsh plants. They do not appreciate being seen. It was quite a thrill to see this one at the edge of the marsh. Once in a while he would come out of the grass.
The purple Gallinule is also a shy marsh bird. They can easily hide in the tall plants. I was amazed to see this one climb up plants. They must not weigh much. It took me a while to find these but I have now seen many of them. The best way to find them is to talk to other birders, and when you find where they might be get out early in the morning. It is worth it!
This is a juvenile Purple Gallinule. He is just starting to show his true colors. I watched this one for a long time and was amazed how these birds can seemingly walk on water. See its large feet. The most fragile vegetation will easily hold them.
The Green Heron is a small bird and very beautiful. It is truly striking with their velvet-green back, rich chestnut body, and dark cap. They generally perch on a plant and wait patiently for lunch to show up in the form of small fish, eels, snails, or frogs. They strike with lightening speed, and lunch has been served.
Another bird that is really beautiful is the Blue Heron. It is much smaller than the great blue heron that often fishes along creek banks. I have never seen a Blue Heron in the north. I photographed this one in Florida. They are very quiet birds often seen in shallow water looking for food.
This was the first and only Reddish Egret I have ever seen. He was beautiful. Reddish Egrets are smaller than great blue herons, but I still could not get over his size. I had been keeping my eyes open for one but thought they were smaller. One day as I was walking on the beach this bird suddenly appeared.