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Susan Eaton's recent post prompts me to share these recent
observations. Common grackles like most bird species are very
opportunistic. Recently while photographing green herons in a marsh
near Jeff City I've observed a small group of grackles foraging in the
shallows. 30 to 40 common grackles are making a substantial part of
their living by catching, pummeling and devouring tiny crayfish. I'd
never seen this behavior after only 35 years of field observations. I
guess that's one of the side benefits of being a wildlife photographer.
Of necessity, I linger for long periods in rich habitat locations. In
my "recreational birder mode" I tend to hurry from one location to the
next---And often missing the subtleties of bird behavior.
I guess this supports the the practice of sedentary birding---or the
long sit.


Jim Rathert

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