Geneseo Republic - Geneseo, IL
A Great Enough Heron
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By Gary DeNeal
Gary DeNeal is the editor and publisher since 1985 of Springhouse, a bi-monthly magazine focusing on the history and lore of southeastern Illinois.
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By Gary DeNeal
May 19, 2013 12:01 a.m.

Picture this.
Camera in hand, I stood atop the low bluffs between Elizabethtown’s historic Rose Hotel and the broad Ohio. With luck I just might get an adequate photograph of the river, complete with floating logs, etc. While framing in, I heard a metallic squawk off to the left, and blamed it on a small boat, perhaps even a barge, but a quick turn about revealed a heron. Only three quick shots were allowed. Two of them went awry.
When I showed the photo to friends, two of them said the bird was a pelican. I told them that couldn’t be, that some pelicans had, indeed, been in Hardin County earlier in the year, but were gone by now.
I am not a birder, which means it cannot be stated here with 100 percent certainty the bird shown shadowing the broad and sun-tinted Ohio is a great blue heron. Until someone who knows says for sure, it remains a GBH as far as I’m concerned.
Whatever the pedigree, it's pretty great, and is not and never will be a pelican.

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