Friday, March 14, 2014

Getting Up Close and Personal With Waterbirds at Brookgreen Gardens

A Black-Crowned Night Heron poses
obligingly on his informational plaque.
Ah, Brookgreen Gardens!  It's one of my family's favourite day trips, while we're staying at Sunset Beach Bliss.  Barely an hour's drive from the condo, it's a delightful destination for a peaceful ramble among both natural and man made beauties.  While it offers an impressive cornucopia of gardens, history, and local wildlife, which will amply fill more than a day of touring, its Aviary is special enough to warrant a separate mention. 

Far from the largest available, the Aviary at Brookgreen Gardens instead allows visitors a brilliant opportunity to get very, very close to a wide variety of local water birds. And I mean close!!  From the moment you walk into the enclosure, you have a generous number of exotic-looking birds perched or casually strolling about, all within arms reach . . . all around you. It's almost eerie how it takes you a moment to notice they are there - and how they don't seem to care how close you come to them (as long as you are quiet and don't try for a snuggle). For shutterbugs and artists who love your birds, it's a treat to get such a close look at the plumage on a living subject.

Here are just a few snaps of some handsome residents, which I was able to take effortlessly with just an iPhone. I invite you to visit the Brookgreen Gardens Aviary yourself and learn their names!