No Competition

Earlier this week the salt marsh was active with many species of wading birds feeding at low tide, including this spoonbill and great blue heron. While the spoonie was very busy moving his spatula shaped bill back and forth through the water in search of food, the heron plucked himself out a nice fish.

If there had been an egret or another blue heron next to him there might have been an issue over who got to eat that fish. But…in this case the spoonbill simply ignored the great blue and it’s catch and continued on hunting for tiny shrimp. Although I have seen spoonbills eat very small fish, they are no competition for a heron and a fish like this, so they can all get along just fine during their evening meal! 

Spoonbill and GBH No Competition

Spoonbill and GBH No Competition

Spoonbill and GBH No Competition

Spoonbill and GBH No Competition

29 thoughts on “No Competition

    • Oh absolutely Deb. If one bird is after only tiny fish and the other is only after big fish, everyone gets along great and is happy. It’s when everybody all want the same thing that problems can arise. 🙂

  1. I never realized how often birds steal each other’s fish until I started following your blog. I found out that size is not always the issue on the aggressor too. But I guess bill shape and diet are in this case in addition to size. It must help stealing fish if the bird has a bill shaped like a spear, or can fly like a jet fighter. Your photos are the best always. 😀

    • Thanks very much for the kind words about my photos I greatly appreciate it. And yes a lot does depend on fishing style and body type. The most dramatic examples of this I see are when a bald eagle will suddenly swoop in out of nowhere to try to steal a fish from a flying osprey, it is quite a sight.

  2. Presumably they know that there is enough for all. So they have the peace to look any further! That’s nice! Nice like your photos, Phil! 😛

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