Tuesday, March 29, 2016

What is an Anhinga?

A is for ... Anhinga

The anhinga sometimes called snakebird, darter, American darter, or water turkey. The word anhinga comes from the Brazilian Tupi language and means devil bird or snake bird.

A long-necked, long-tailed swimmer of southeastern swamps. Often seen perched on a snag above the water, with its wings half-spread to dry. Can vary its buoyancy in water, sometimes swimming with only head and neck above water (earning it the nickname of "Snakebird"). Often solitary when feeding, it roosts in groups and nests in colonies. Looks rather like a cormorant when perched, but not in flight, when the long tail may be spread wide as the Anhinga soars high on outstretched wings. Anhingas are silent at most times, but around nesting colonies they make various croaking and clicking sounds.

This is the beginning of a nature series I'd going to photograph things that begin with letters of the alphabet.

Anhinga chicks


Photo taken at the Viera Wetlands, Florida

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