Black-crowned Night Heron, all images © Karen Schuenemann, KarenSchuenemann.com
Of all the images we’ve seen of the Black-crowned Night Heron this summer — and there have been many — this photo of a solitary juvenile bird by photographer Karen Schuenemann is one of our favorites.
Our latest featured photographer, Schuenemann is an avid birder and photographer in the Los Angeles area, where she lives and works as a retail manager.
Her off-duty pursuits? “My personal mission is capturing the urban wildlife in Southern California,” Schuenemann says. “It often amazes me how wildlife survives squeezed in between construction, roads and people. I have spent many hours watching Peregrine Falcons nest on the cliffs of San Pedro. I’ve had the opportunity to watch the parents catch their food and return to feed the youngsters. To observe the youngsters grow and take their first flight has been truly breathtaking.”
To celebrate one of the nation’s most biodiverse regions for birds (L.A. – who knew?) we asked Schuenemann to share some of her favorite shots.
Schuenemann: This is a landscape on a misty morning at Bolsa Chica Wetlands in Huntington Beach, CA. Photographed: Great Blue Heron.
These Black Skimmers were foraging in the early evening at Bolsa Chica Wetlands. The calm waters allow prey to rise towards the surface and the Skimmers’ long lower mandibles allow them to locate the fish by touch and quickly shut their mouths and have their meal.
Photographed near Chino, CA: I recently encountered several Burrowing Owls that live right next to the road in a dirt patch separating a power plant and a park!
Taken at Bolsa Chica Wetlands, this Great Egret was captured at sunrise.
An uncommon sighting at Bolsa Chica Wetlands, I watched this Reddish Egret perform its unusual feeding behavior before it flew over the pond.
Taken on the cliffs of the Palos Verdes peninsula, this young Peregrine Falcon had just fledged and was practicing its flying skills.
Upon return of the female, these juvenile Forster’s Terns rejoiced with loud calls and jumping towards the mother at Bolsa Chica, attempting to get the meal that she brought back.
Bird boxes set up at San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary allow Tree Swallows to build their nests. Many possible nesting sites are destroyed in the forestry process of removing dead trees. Tree Swallows are common in open fields as well as marshes.
Double-crested Cormorant: Taken at El Dorado Regional Park in Long Beach, CA, this cormorant emerged suddenly with its catch of the day.
This Brown Pelican was plunge diving and I captured the image before it brought its pouch out of the water.
Great Egret at Bolsa Chica Wetlands, I entitled this image “Circle of Life.” Since the population was decimated in the late 1800s and subsequently protected, the species is increasing. However, without habitats such as the Bolsa Chica Wetlands restoration, we wouldn’t have the population on the rise.
If you would like to be considered as a featured wildlife photographer for International Bird Rescue, or would like to recommend a photographer for this regular feature, please e-mail us with your submission.
And check out some of our previous featured photographers, including Jackie Wollner of Los Angeles, Yeray Seminario of Spain, Graham McGeorge of Florida and Christopher Taylor of Venice, Calif.