Friday, January 10, 2014

Black Heron canopy fishing

The Black Heron or Black Egret (Egretta ardesiaca) is a common small heron in Africa and can sometimes be observed at the edge of lakes or swamps.


Black Heron (Egretta ardesiaca) in Gambia
Black Heron in Gambia (Egretta ardesiaca).
These birds a famous for (so called) canopy fishing. They from an umbrella with the wings, wait 1 or 2 seconds, go some steps apart and do it again. The scientific explanation is that they attract small fishes with the shadow of the wings but small fishes swim away when a shadow appears suddenly on the water. In addition, the time is too short to attract fishes. I think they make it to reduce the surface reflection. Nevertheless, they are clever birds and really funny to see. 
Black Heron forming an umbrella.

Black Heron canopy fishing in Gambia
Look around if everything is safe.
A few steps further ...



Black egret fishing
Canopy fishing again.

Black Egret canopy fishing

Shared with Weekend Reflections, Id-rather-b-birdin, Wild Bird Wednesday and Nature Notes.

23 comments:

  1. Fantastic shots of the heron fishing.

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  2. Beautiful! Happy Weekend Reflections.

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  3. Very interesting story about the fishing of black heron... The photos are amazing... Nicely done...

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  4. What an interesting post..I love birds and this is so interesting..thanks for sharing

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  5. The most stunning is the dove standing in the water next to him... Nice first shot, very intriguing !

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  6. Strange, funny and interesting! A real discovery for me, thank you!

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  7. This is a grat serie!
    Well done!

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  8. Fantastic shots. I've never come across a Black Heron before, so thank you for enlightening me.

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  9. Black heron? I have never heard of them before, but I love the herons we have in Canada so would likely want to search these out too...if I could. ;))

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  10. Fabulous shots of the heron fishing.

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  11. What a stunning bird!!! Thanks for sharing your images.

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  12. Never seen this type of fishing before.

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  13. I read about this bird a few days ago, so nice to your images of it. Nice catch. :)

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  14. Never heard about canopy fishing before... really interesting behavior and great photos.

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  15. A great series of photos and very interesting to see how the heron spreads its wings like that.

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  16. Cool series on the heron! Great captures!

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  17. Nice timing to be able to capture this behavior!

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  18. Brilliant set of images showing this behaviour, love it, great post

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  19. Interesting behavior. Our Wood Storks and egrets also produce shade with their wings, not to this degree. Supposedly it is for the same reason-- the stork stirs the water with its feet and it is said that the fish seek shelter in the shade and venture into their open bill. Since they are tactile feeders this makes sense. But herosn? I share your skepticism.

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  20. Really cool shots! Love the umbrella stance. Visiting from I'd Rather B Birdin'. :)

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