Bug-sucking satellite-dish bird

I’ve seen this a bunch of times with Great Blue Herons–I call it their ‘satellite dish’ pose.  In addition to the pose, it may not be visible in the image, but there is a swarm of gnats flying around above and around the bird’s open bill. The bird was breathing rapidly as I could see its cheeks pulsating in and out in a fast rhythm.  This made me wonder if it was actually sucking in these flying bugs for a little extra protein!?!   I was just about to get a video of this behavior but the bird went back to its normal pose just as I was ready to hit the record button.

Canon 5D Mark III, 1/1600, f5, ISO 320, 500mm, 1:33 p.m.

I’ve seen this a bunch of times with Great Blue Herons–I call it their ‘satellite dish’ pose.  In addition to the pose, it may not be visible in the image, but there is a swarm of gnats flying around above and around the bird’s open bill. The bird was breathing rapidly as I could see its cheeks pulsating in and out in a fast rhythm.  This made me wonder if it was actually sucking in these flying bugs for a little extra protein!?!   I was just about to get a video of this behavior but the bird went back to its normal pose just as I was ready to hit the record button.

Canon 5D Mark III, 1/1600, f5, ISO 320, 500mm, 1:33 p.m.

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