Unusual grey heron encounter

Unusual grey heron encounter

I had an unusual grey heron encounter the other day.  Ask any wildlife cameraman and they will have an unusual wildlife story to tell.  This one took the whole crew by surprise.

Grey Heron

I am part of a team filming a series about wildlife in towns and cities.  It really is surprising what you come across.  One night we found ourselves in a suburban street in mid Wales listening to midwife Toads.  One resident thought that the battery in someone’s car alarm was on the blink.  She was delighted to learn that it was in fact the sound of a midwife toad.

Back to the heron.  Lots of people feed birds in their gardens.  It’s a great thing to do for all sorts of reasons, and if you’re interested in that take a look here for advice from the RSPB.

While I was filming swallows one day the director met a chap walking his dog.  They started chatting about the series and the gentleman said, ‘Ah, you should meet the chap in the village with the heron.’ One thing led to another.  So it was the whole crew knocked on the door of a nice little semi in Llanberis one day last week.  A very nice, elderly Welsh speaking gentleman led us through his house. He cautioned that his Heron was wild and very shy, so we should proceed with caution.  I had the camera all ready on the tripod to plonk down and grab what I could in the few moments that I’m sure we would have. The director was behind me with another camera to cover the interview while I grabbed shots of the bird.

He opened the back door carefully, and there standing on his doorstep was a grey heron.  It was a little jumpy, but already we were in the depths of an unusual grey heron encounter. We all edged out onto the back lawn and took up positions.  The heron flapped up onto a low wall, keen and eager.  The gentleman took out a pack of sausages, chopped them up and proceeded to feed the heron, which gulped them down with relish.  I mean eagerly – it didn’t want tomato relish. After having scoffed half a packet of finest Lincolnshire sausages it flew off.

From a wildlife cameraman point of view it was a tad bizarre. I can’t wait to see the cut sequence, as in this country it would be difficult to surpass for being unusual.  Does anyone feed otters in their garden, or eagles perhaps?