The other day, I was reviewing images from a trip to Florida in May and came across the above image that caught my attention. The Great Egret was in the shade so I used a speedlight (Nikon SB-910–flash) with a Better Beamer (flash extender) to capture this image. The egret was showing off its mating plumage to attract a mate. It is a common pose during spring mating season, when egrets grow long plumes from their backs and the skin between their beaks and eyes turns bright green. It is the male that typically does the posing to attract a mate.
Later, the sun broke through the clouds and trees, illuminating the egret (below image). Its mating feathers glistened brillantly in the bright morning light. I no longer needed the speedlight to get the shot.
Did you know that egrets can live over 20 years and can fly 25 mph with only two flaps of their powerful wings?
The above images were taken with a Nikon D800 and 80-400mm lens at 230mm.
Below are a couple of favorite Great Egrets images from other trips to Florida.
I have taken a summer “vacation” from blog writing, but not from photography. I will be posting new articles and images over the next few weeks.
A couple of upcoming photography trips include Bulls Island off the coast of South Carolina next month and a 12 day trip to Iceland in the spring. On both trips, I will be traveling with two good friends and photographers (Ceasar Sharper and Ernie Sears). In Iceland, we will be joining a professional landscape photographer and resident of Iceland, Páll Jökull Pétursson. Click on his name to see his amazing Iceland landscape images. I plan to return with many similar photographs.
Another item of interest is that my blog is quickly approaching 100,000 views. It is rewarding knowing others are enjoying my photography. To all those reading this article and following my blog, thank you!
Wow, this is fantastic! Thanks for the photo tips too. 🙂
Love the egret plumage..never would have seen that if it wasn’t for your amazing photography. Thanks for sharing
It was interesting to see this beautiful bird showing off as if he was the king of the rookery. He seemed to be as oblivious to the several hundred birds within fifty yards around him as they were of him. Thanks for the egret facts. I had no idea that they could live so long. And as always, thanks for sharing the great images.
Lovely pictures! And you are going to not believe how gorgeous Iceland is. We’ve posted our favorites from our trip there at the end of June. It is a stunning place!
Stephen – you take absolutely gorgeous photos of wildlife. Is there a reason you remain an amateur rather than a professional. I know pros who don’t do as well as you. Sue
Steve, I love catching up with your blog. The pictures are fantastic and I always learn something from the commentary