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Sarasota News Leader May 31, 2013 a gray-blue tinge. All passerines (small songbirds) and all seabirds — Gulls, Terns, Pelicans, Cormorants and Anhingas — are out of the picture. This is obviously a shore bird and a diurnal one, as it is mostly spotted in the morning, late afternoon and early evening. That eliminates nocturnal shore birds such as the Black-crowned Night Heron. (Yes, they are quite common on Siesta Key, yet rarely seen!) So, we are down to an Egret or another species of Heron. Page 77 Heron and the Great Egret, as they do not hesitate to hang around fisherfolk or people at the grills while putting on their forlorn, but highly effective, "I've never been fed in my whole life" act. 3) Size. The bird is large enough to be noticed while it is wading and fishing, and it allows itself to be seen. This eliminates the small shy, difficult-to-spot Green Heron. 4) Shape. No clue, but the beak must be large enough for people to notice it; so we are still 2) Behavior. This bird is comfortable enough down to Egrets and Herons. around people to continue fishing and dining without being scared. Obviously, it is a bird Now we turn to another clue, "Beautiful." That we are used to seeing around here; one indif- eliminates the Yellow-crowned Night Heron, ferent or inured to people's presence. Howev- often seen mornings and evenings fishing er, it does not intrude upon people's activities. our shores — and a bird sporting a pale bluThat fact most likely eliminates the Great Blue ish-gray bill. But people would not exclaim, The dragonfly's presence is helpful in understanding the size of the Tricolored Heron. File photo

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