It is easy to be skeptical about most things in life.  Ignoring our hopes and expectations prevents disappointment and gives us a reason to say ‘I told you so’ when something doesn’t go the way we wanted.  More often than not, the idealistic stories that sound charming and interesting are the ones in which I am the most skeptical, especially when they come from Tom Imrie…

Tom is a masterful storyteller and fantastic game ranger.  He has an innate gift to communicate wonderful messages through his observations of the natural world and almost always points to the ‘theatre of the little’ to find what is truly fascinating.  Whilst these stories often resonate with me, I am frequently guilty of forgetting about them as I pursue the sightings of Lions Killing Buffaloes and Leopards battling with Hyenas instead.

So when Tom told me that I should keep my eye on a Green Back Heron that had nested with two eggs around Camp Dam, I dismissed the idea almost immediately.  Of what interest are Green Back Herons and will we honestly get to see the chicks?

In Tom’s gentle manner, he answered my first question with his blog post explaining how the small, detailed nest; the relationship between the male and female as well as the blue green colours of the eggs.  He then left the second question up to nature to provide the answers.  True to form, it did and yesterdays marked the discovery of single chick sitting amongst the mismatched twigs.

Hopefully this Green Back Heron will grow up and with the aid of its mother learn how to lure prey towards it by using bait such as feathers, worms or insects and dropping them onto the surface of the water.  It appears that this bait is not only cunningly used to attract potential food but obviously also for humans as well.  The lure of looking for these hatched eggs was obviously too great for even a skeptic like myself to resist…

I now agree with Tom that “we’ve found a far more interesting and less troublesome story” in these Herons than in other current news.  I have also found that the ‘Theatre of the Little’ is quite possibly the greatest source for discovering a wealth of humbling stories to take put the broader picture into perspective.  This is the one of the first babies of spring that I have seen, and most certainly not the last.  The warm season of summers  is coming back again and even for a skeptic, it is hard to deny that nature very rarely disappoints any of our hopes or expectations…The key is knowing where to look.

Filed under Wildlife

About the Author

Rich Laburn

Head of Digital

Rich is the driving force behind Londolozi’s online storytelling and the Londolozi blog. His passions of digital media, film and photography, combined with his field-guiding background, have seen him take the Londolozi blog to new heights since he began it in 2009. Rich ...

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