Thursday, 21 August 2014

Great Blue Heron eats a Gartersnake

Yesterday while working away I noticed a Great Blue Heron in the pond I can see from my desk. I quickly noticed it had something in its beak and a look through my binoculars revealed it had caught an Eastern Gartersnake. I grabbed my scope and took a couple shots through my phone:

I even managed to catch it on video. I like how once the heron finally gets it into its throat it takes several gulps of water to help wash it down - must be a bit squirmy still!!

The gartersnake isn't the only tasty treat I've seen a Great Blue Heron catch recently. Last week my sister and I watched as a (the same?) Great Blue Heron walked through the pasture across from my house and captured then swallowed a small mammal - possibly a meadow vole.


  1. We used to see one that "hunted." It would wait near a bird feeder on shore for chipmunks to come to eat the spilled seed. It would catch one, then carry it down to the lake, hold it under water till it drowned, then eat it. Frankly a bit disturbing to watch.

    1. Cool! I remember hearing about a Great Blue Heron in Algonquin Park that spent several summers in Mew Lake Campground eating chipmunks. The chipmunks were quite tame and used to lots of people walking close to them and apparently they didn't clue in that that set of feet/legs were different until it was too late!