This stork reminded me of an Elizabethan era aristocrat with a high ruffled collar.
We saw a number of wood storks on the Santa Fe Canoe trip last Saturday. None were feeding, mostly they were high in sunlit riverside trees preening and resting.
Actually, wood storks would probably have a tough time feeding along much of the Santa Fe river bank as it was steep in places.
These guys need shallow water where they can wade and swish their open beak around until it contacts some unlucky fish, frog, or crayfish. I imagine they work the riverside swamps when it's time to dine. They can actually benefit from droughts as it exposes the shallow feeding grounds that they require, although too much of a dry thing is not good for them either.
We were canoeing into the sun, so everytime we got to one, they were backlit a bit, making exposure tricky. This guy's cheek and the log are too dark for my tastes, but I still like the pic enough to share it with you. What I really like is the frame of twigs arching over the stork.
Storks are just downright beautiful in flight where you can see their disinct black and white plumage and their impressive wingspan. That's when they shine.
Other birds along the Santa Fe Saturday were egrets, limpkins,kingfishers, cooper's hawk, vultures, blue herons, and heard, but not seen, sandhill cranes.
I nailed the limpkin and the hawk ... all others are just memories.