I came across this tall and magnificent heron whilst walking along the towpath of my local canal. He or she was on the opposite bank of the canal, and it seemed fixed to the spot. Then it sudddenly snapped a fish out of the water and flew off. It all happened so very quicjly. Apparently they also eat frogs, reptiles and small mammals like rats. Grey Herons can remain as still as a statue or walk slowly along the water’s edge before darting at lightning speed to seize fish in its powerful bill. It builds its nest from sticks in treetops laying 4 to 5 eggs in 1 brood from January to May. They can live for up to 25 years.
It can be seen all year round in fresh or salt water habitats, or even near garden ponds in urban areas. It is also seen perched on top of trees or rooftops. A common and widespread bird throughout the UK.
Photograph of Grey Heron (Ardea cinerea), taken June 2010, local canal, Staffordshire. © Pete Hillman 2010. Camera used Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ38.