On Tuesday, I was riveted to little guy’s first attempts at exploring all around him. You can see the wonder in his eyes as he stares, listening to that big world out there. This was his first exploration away from the nest, gingerly picking his way out onto tiny branches. I was struck by his sense of awe and laser-like concentration, but worried about his risk taking. At one point, I said “No” softly under my breath and walked onto the area of a bridge just under him to catch him should he fall. I never interfere in nature, but this time I wanted to be there if needed. He made it that time.
Fast forwarding, he was not in the nest yesterday, a brutal testament to the difficulty these birds face every minute of every day. His fate was sealed, he has departed along with many others of this new generation. These images captured his essence and splendor on the last day of his life, his special attraction to an environment which claimed him far too soon.

Dedicated to this curious three week old chick—He wandered too far too soon.


great white egret, chick, explore, wonder

I treasure connections with those who are touched in some way by nature’s beauty. During those magic moments, we share a special awe in nature’s presence. We are compelled to see and share. Connections make us who we are and relationships within nature give our lives meaning.

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  • Scott Denny
    Scott Dennyabout 3 years ago

    Nature is strange in that we are often happy when many species flourish but sad when their lives are taken by nature. That life will bring life to other species. It is still hard to be excited about that…I totally understand.

    I watched a wolf pack hunt and kill a young elk in Yellowstone in 2008. What a string of emotions. First I was excited to see the actual hunt, the chase, the victory. Then I was sad to see the young elks monther stand about 40 feet away as the wolves ate her calf. Then I was happy to have gotten shots of one of my favorite animals – wolves. Then I realized that wolves will only survive as long as they kill and eat the young and weak.

    Nature can be an emotional rollercoaster.

    Great post…great dedication.

  • What an adventure you had watching all of those magnificent animals in their element. I really appreciate your words of wisdom and consolation. You are so right, that is the way of nature, every species is dependent upon others for their survival. Nature is an emotional rollercoaster. I appreciate your taking the time to share your story and your support. That means much to me. Thank you Scott!

    – Joe Jennelle

  • Ray Clarke
    Ray Clarkeabout 3 years ago

  • Larry Trupp
    Larry Truppabout 3 years ago

  • Carol2
    Carol2about 3 years ago

    I would have done the same!! I love animals and when this happens it is sooo very sad. Beautiful capture of this little sweetheart!!

  • Thank you Carol. We are of the same philosophy in these situations.

    – Joe Jennelle

  • Manon Boily
    Manon Boilyabout 3 years ago

    this hairy guy is really cute! lol. yes, seems to be very curious. reminds me when I was a baby ;) nice, sharp and clear shot Joe

  • Thank you very much Manon. Your critiques are very helpful and welcomed

    – Joe Jennelle

  • Konstantinos Arvanitopoulos
    Konstantinos A...about 3 years ago

    24 June 2011 – 1 image per day

  • Pamela Phelps
    Pamela Phelpsabout 3 years ago

    I cried as I read this an looked back many times to the image! You have said it all my friend! What great expression of wonder and awe on this little one’s face!

  • Thank you Pamela, We are of the same mind and heart on this.

    – Joe Jennelle

  • Tracy66
    Tracy66about 3 years ago

    It is a shame, but that is nature, I would have been there to catch him if I could.

  • Of course you would, you are a very caring person. It just was not meant to be. One of nature’s lessons. We are so small and insignificant in the big drama going on every minute of every day

    – Joe Jennelle

  • walela
    walelaover 2 years ago

    Great shot!

  • Thank you walela! Much appreciated.

    – Joe Jennelle

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