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Friday, June 21, 2024

Dan Tallman’s Chook Weblog: American Bittern

All winter an American Bitter frolicked alongside a small, grassy creek on the Billy Frank Jr Nationwide Wildlife Refuge. Regardless of a large number of eBird experiences, we solely discovered the chook twice, most just lately on 24 February 2022. Along with being cryptically coloured, bitterns usually freeze when approached. We stood on a marsh overlook. Two birders exclaimed, “There’s a bittern!” Erika and I ran over and there in plain sight, calmly strolled a bittern.

At one level the bittern stopped, and leaned over to see at one thing within the water. The chook, nonetheless, made no strike. Bitterns patiently await passing prey. The birds largely hunt at daybreak or nightfall. Nearly something will do—bugs, amphibians, crayfish, small fish or small mammals (Lowther et al. 2020). 

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