The Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge near Cambridge, Md., provides nature lovers with a variety of wildlife.
This photo was taken a few Februaries ago while we drove the nature loop at Blackwater. I do not think we have ever driven through Blackwater and not seen at least one bald eagle. According to Wikipedia, the refuge located on the Eastern Shore of Maryland was established in 1933 as a waterfowl sanctuary for birds migrating along the critical migration highway called the Atlantic Flyway.
Blackwater is just about a three hour drive from Northern Virginia and it a great place to stop on the way to Chincoteague.
This particular February day was a windy one. Throughout our drive we saw a lot of herons standing still for long periods of time (longer than usual) next to the brush surrounding the waterways, apparently seeking some buffer from the heavy winds.
I photographed this heron for a while, slowly moving as close as I could to the bird without startling it. The closer I got I was also able to compose the photo in such a way so that the background clutter was reduced, especially around the heron’s weathered beak.