Be fruitful and multiply..

     When God created the birds of the air (and all living things) he gave a command…”Be fruitful and multiply”. Let me tell you that is one of the few commandments we seem to have listened to. But for some of creation it is not an easy thing anymore. While we “civilized” populations built homes for our families and expanded across the country, the trees and breeding habitats of some of the animals and birds have shrunk accordingly. One of the few places in Florida where one can see breeding marsh birds up close and personal is the Venice Area Audubon Rookery. It is located in Sarasota county in the city of Venice Florida.

     Day 1 of my recent three-day bird photography workshop across central Florida brought us to the Venice Rookery. Although they call it a lake, I would call it more of a large pond with a small clump of trees and brush on a small island.  This is an ideal habitat for birds to nest as land predators have no easy access to the nest and eggs. This small island is host to breeding Great Blue Herons, Great Egrets, Snowy Egrets, Green Herons, Black-crowned Night Herons, Tricolored Herons, Anhinga, Cormorants and several other species. That is a good thing. The bad thing, is that it seems they are all trying to breed and build nests at the same time in a very small area. Territorial squabbles are marked by mere inches. Every square foot of this island seems covered with one bird or another. Photographers have difficulty deciding which bird to follow.

     Unfortunately, the sun and clouds did not cooperate the morning we were there and I struggled to capture the nest building activity in the less than optimum lighting conditions. Hope you enjoy the attempt to share this little “paradise” with you. Blessings. Harry

Photo from Bing Gallery website.

The Venice rookery is a small lake/pond with an even smaller island habitat in the middle. Photo from Google

Nearly every square inch is covered with breeding marsh birds from Bing Gallery shots

Get another stick she says...I stole this one from an Anhinga...Black-crowned Night Heron wing kisses the lake..

  Incoming stick....the landing areas are a real challenge..

Incoming stick....the landing areas are a real challenge..

Great Egret Glides above the island looking for a safe landing branch

Great Blue Heron Touchdown with full flaps applied to land on a narrow branch..

  Only the strong survive...Sibling rivalry with Great Blue Heron chicks..they will be fledging soon..

Only the strong survive...Sibling rivalry with Great Blue Heron chicks..they will be fledging soon..

  Great Blue Heron display posture

Great Blue Heron display posture

Anhinga Male bringing in stick for nesting..(note the blue breeding color around the eye)

Be Fruitful and's a tough job but someone has to do it..and I'm your bird..


All photographs and materials copyrighted and possession of Harry D Selsor. All rights reserved.

Photos are avail for purchase framed or unframed.