Threading the Needle





Great blue herons zig-zag through a maze of cottonwood branches to get to their nest. At first, I hated all the sticks, but later accepted the fact that herons choose their nest sites to make it difficult for predators.

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Pertinent technical details or techniques:

D850 600mm f4. Crop for comp, tweaked white balance for sky.
Thank you @Diane_Miller and @Eric_Bennett. I reposted the image with an adjustment to cool down the white balance according to Eric’s suggestion. Thank you and Happy New Year.


I think this is a wonderful environmental shot in lovely light. I love that I can see the entire nest and the way it is supported in the tree. Having the pair there is very nice and the pose of the incoming one is classic.

Are they nest-building this early?

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Pretty nice scene here but it needs to be just slightly cooled down. The sky feels a bit too warm and you aren’t getting the warm/cool color contrast that you could be. It will help the birds pop out a lot more.

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It’s gone a bit low contrast now, though. I pulled the original into ACR and tweaked the Temp just a few notches toward blue and a couple away from magenta and got this – just tossing it out for comparison. I’ve always found warm light difficult to adjust.