Heron – amazing bird
Heron is an amazing long-legged bird. It typically can be found in ponds, marshes, and swamps. Herons feed while standing or walking in shallow water. They live nearly all over the world, except in Antarctica and arctic North America and Eurasia. There are about 60 species of heron. Several types are called egrets.
A heron is a tall bird with broad wings and a long neck. Its bill is long, straight, and pointed. These birds often have gray, brown, black, or white feathers.
Herons feed on fish, amphibians, snakes, small mammals, and other animals living in the shallow waters of wetlands. You know, herons stand in the water on one foot because the water is usually cold. Thus, they warm the feet one by one. It may stand on one leg motionless for several hours.
These birds typically build platform nests of sticks in trees, sometimes with many nests in a single, large tree. By the way, these birds are considered monogamous. But usually their relationship lasts for one season. As an exception, there are couples whose family life lasts two years or more.
Feathers used mostly as decorations on ladies’ hats and other clothing. Many millions of herons and egrets were killed for this reason, and their populations declined precipitously in most regions.
The goliath heron, which is about 150 centimeters long, is the largest heron. The great blue heron is one of the best- known types of heron.
The Chinese egret is a tall wading bird. Its plumage is pure white. Male and female egrets mate for life. After building a nest the female lays 2 to 5 eggs and incubates them for approximately 30 days until they hatch. In winter, the bird migrates south to the Philippines and Malaysia. Like many egret species, it was hunted almost to the point of extinction in the nineteenth century when the fashion industry increased its demand for feathers.
The maximum lifespan is 25 years.
During migration flights, herons were seen at an altitude of 2000 m (helicopters fly at that height).
You know, more than 10 years ago herons choose the Dutch capital as their home and they are not going to return to the swamps. There is no problem with food – in the markets they can always beg for a fish or steal it. But the good people of Amsterdam often feed their feathered neighbors and do it with pleasure. Herons walk freely around the city, to the delight of citizens and to the amazement of numerous tourists, they take pictures with pleasure, receiving delicious “fees” for photo shoots. So, the birds have become the attraction of Amsterdam.
Heron is a symbol of curiosity. In addition, it symbolizes vigilance and calm.
In Egypt, the heron is a symbol of the morning (rising) Sun and is revered as the creator of light.
Christians sometimes perceive the heron as an allegory of believers, towering above the bad weather in life, like a heron overcoming rain clouds.