“Under the boardwalk”, as the song goes. But can you spot anyone on the boardwalk?
It’s an Egyptian Goose, perhaps a little surprised – it could be the visual effect of the brown circle around his eyes, or it could be genuine astonishment at the snow, of which there is very little in Egypt! Egyptian Geese are two a penny here – we have got used to them, and apparently they have got used to the weather.
Then we came across another exotic visitor, which I have seen along the banks of the Nile, but never before in Belgium. It’s an egret. What’s the difference between a heron and an egret? Nobody is sure, it seems. The name egret comes from the French Aigrette, which means ‘silver heron’ and also ‘brush’. Though snowy white rather than silver is more accurate.
Their feathers were highly prized by European and American hat-makers in the 19th century, which sadly meant these beautiful birds were killed in large numbers. Senselessly cruel as this seems, we still kill animals for fashion – the Covid-19 outbreaks in mink farms in the Netherlands, Denmark and elsewhere recently highlighted the scale of mink farming in Europe. This article from Politico makes a solid case for banning mink farming in Europe, and I can’t imagine why that hasn’t happened yet.
A world away from such horrors, the snow draped everything with a gentle frosty coating.
Everything was quiet and still. Even the ducks dived quietly, and the Canada goose (more used to snow, this one) glided gently away.
12 thoughts on “On the boardwalk”
Lovely photos! Just a note, however, that it is a “Canada goose”, not “Canadian”. Canada geese are real pests in many places here in Vermont because that get so comfortable here.
Many thanks for the correction, I will edit! What mischief do they get up to in Vermont?
What a handsome Egyptian Goose! We don’t have them, but we do the Canada Geese. Your Tufted Duck looks similar to our Scaup without the ‘tuft’! 🙂
Oh, I forgot your Great Egret visitor, how wonderful, they are so elegant!
Yes this is one Florida bird that is just as happy in Belgium, it seems 😄
Thanks Donna! These Egyptian geese are so common here, we almost take their looks for granted!
How nice to see so many birds calmly going about their lives. They’ve created a new wildlife reserve with large lake near the hospital here and this post makes me keen to visit. Never seen an Egyptian goose before. Interesting that they are so established in Belgium.
That’s great news re the new wildlife reserve. It would be a good time to visit, I’m sure you’ll spot a few geese. Who knows, maybe an Egyptian one….
Nice winter impressions. Now and then we see white egrets in Belgium but most of all we see the blue egrets.
Thanks Rudi! Yes we have the blue heron around here too – I saw one today at another lake looking very cold, poor thing. The white egrets are less common in and around Brussels.
Gorgeous photos, especially the one of the tree. It is amazing!
Thanks, I enjoy winter for being able to see the beautiful branches and framework of trees so clearly.