Photos / Sounds


Diamondback Watersnake (Nerodia rhombifer)




July 10, 2018 08:12 PM CDT


a big snake in the water. the first 4 photos actually occur after the rest of the photos, but i think photo 1 tells the story best in a single shot. honestly, i didn't realize there was a snake in these photos until i looked at them back at home. when i was taking the photos, i first noticed the yellow-crowned night heron (Nyctanassa violacea), who seemed very purposefully hunting, walking much faster than these birds normally do. in reality, it looks like it was chasing or following this snake. then the snowy egret (Egretta thula) and the juvenile black-crowned night heron (Nycticorax nycticorax) came along, and i thought it was interesting that they had all decided to fish in the same spot. in reality, it looks like they were helping to corner the snake. i thought the egret and the juvenile heron decided to cede the spot to the yellow-crowned heron, since they moved away, but in reality, it looks like they were continuing to chase the snake, while the yellow-crowned was content to watch from afar. i didn't get photos of what happened next, but a big heron (maybe another yellow-crowned?) swooped down, and i thought it was attacking the egret and the juvenile heron, since they dispersed. but the big heron flew away, not sticking around to claim the spot. so maybe in reality it was attacking the snake, too, or maybe it was telling the other birds not to mess with it, or maybe it even grabbed the snake for dinner? (is that even a possibility?) anyway, life is tough for a snake -- even a big snake -- when you're ganged up on by birds.