2014 ORA - Part I - Blue Heron Having Lunch

I am always fascinated watching the beach wildlife. The Blue Heron will not pickup and eat a dead fish it has not killed. It will accept live fish from fishermen which are too small to keep or a type not wanted. So it is very common to see a Heron hanging around the active fishermen. You can also see them standing on the edge of the surf for hours waiting for a fish to come near the edge. Then they quickly strike.

On this day I watched as a Heron grabbed a fish out of the surf. It seems to stun the fish with it's long bill. Then lays it in shallow water and continuously strikes it with it's pointed bill.

The heron pokes the fish with it's pointed bill to kill it.

Then lays the fish in the shallow water and verifies that the fish is dead.

When it feels ready, he prepares to swallow the fish head first.

The fish looks too large to swallow.

It seems to expand it's mouth and neck to accommodate the fish.

It takes an effort to eat something this big.

Open wide!

I was worried that the fish was stuck.
I was wondering if I would have to use the Heimlich Maneuver.

It is still just behind the head and slowly going down.

The fish is in the lower neck.

The fish is in the stomach and the Heron is looking for another.
I continued my walk and when I returned about 30 minutes later the Heron was still fishing.

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