Hidden in the rushes

An extremely rare vagrant from north America

A few weeks ago we turned into twitchers  as a German birder pointed out to us something incredibly unusual on the lake at São Lourenço, a Green Heron.

Green Heron
Butorides virescens

Green Herons are neither Portuguese native or visitor; in fact it is extremely rare to see one in Western Europe as they are American herons. This one is a vagrant, and must have been blown off course by the storms in the Autumn. It was first spotted here in mid October, and the lake and surrounding wetlands are perfect habitat for it. However it is obviously still disorientated from its unusual journey as they are almost nocturnal birds, and so to see it so easily during daylight is not a great sign.

Not that will have bothered most twitchers, as many of them have travelled miles to see it so they can tick it off their lists. As birders it was interesting to see, but our lasting emotion was one of sadness. This bird shouldn’t be here, it should be in north or central America.

15 comments on “Hidden in the rushes

  1. I’m with you on this one – it is sad when a bird finds itself alone and so far from where it’s supposed to be. I wonder if it will try to find its way back or just fly off hoping for the best?


    • I can’t quite see how it can as not sure they can fly that long distance with the assistance of a storm, but fingers crossed!


  2. It is a sad looking bird at best of times but to be alone……I hope it has a happy life in Algarve. Vagrant is an unusual word to call the Heron.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. It’s great for everyone to see it, but how sad to think it will never return home. Poor thing.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh, but such a lovely bird and how marvellous for you to see it; hopefully it will get strength to enable it to fly back to where it should be.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Great images but better here than feeding the fishes

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Great photographs dear Becky, I loved them. Thank you, Love, nia

    Liked by 1 person

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