herons return to stow lake

The herons are returning to nest in the stand of trees on the little island in Stow Lake, in front of the boat house.  Last weekend I saw five of them, seemingly inspecting their nests and assessing necessary repairs.  With their unique ungainly grace, they are truly marvelous to watch!  How they manage to construct secure housing for chicks on those spindly-looking branches is a wonder! Apparently this rookery dates to 1993, or so.  By 1995 it had become locally famous, as this 1995 article written by Katherine Seligman recounts.


From the higher vantage points on the slopes of Strawberry Hill there are good views of the nests, especially with the aid of good binoculars.  Males and females construct the nest together and then take turns sitting on the eggs.

a great blue heron approaches nest (photo by sharon osberg, wildworldfoto.com)


About fromthethicket

I'm a landscape historian and professor emeritus of landscape architecture, UC Davis. I live in San Francisco.
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1 Response to herons return to stow lake

  1. RKB says:

    Oh how wonderful! I remember when they arrived. It was a hold-your-breath jaw-dropping will-they-stay? moment.

    Sort of like the sea lions at Fisherman’s wharf, only with feathers and reproduction.

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