“Watched a Grey Heron (Ardea cinerea jouyi) handle a rather large fish, almost too much for the bird (below). The fish was dropped a number of times, the head stabbed and it was turned sideways and shaken; presumably to break the vertebral column of the fish. The fish was repositioned a number of times before it could be swallowed.
“What was of interest to me was the post feeding behaviour. The bird seemed to drink water or wash the beak a number of times. It also picked up sticks a few times to run through the beak (below). At first I thought this was nest building activity, but after 5-6 episodes of picking up and discarding sticks I suspect it could be cleaning the inside of the beak.
“Perhaps the large fish had left some lingering sensation in the beak or some tiny bits were stuck.
I managed to capture some of these observations on video and appreciate any opinions.
Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
26th June 2017
Location: Tambun, Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
Habitat: Secondary growth near limestone hills and ex-mining pools (fish farming)