Great Blue Heron With Two Shad

Great Blue Heron With Two Shad - Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge - Oklahoma

Great Blue Heron With Two Shad - Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge - Oklahoma

I Photographed this Great Blue Heron with two shad at the Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge in Oklahoma. I am always amazed at how quick these birds are at catching these shad. The Heron had a school of shad around it and was able to catch several while I was photographing it.

I believe these are Gizzard Shad, and they start spawning between mid-May and early June. They spawn in large numbers and can reach densities high enough to make sure that many of them survive past the first year, making them essentially invulnerable to predation.

Gizzard shad feed mainly during the day, with minimal activity at night.

The gizzard shad is so named because it possesses a gizzard, a sack filled with rocks or sand, that aids the animal in the breakdown of consumed food. (Source - Wikipedia)

How I Got The Shot - Great Blue Heron

I had my Canon EOS 7D Mark II camera resting on a bean bag draped over the open window of my pickup. I was using a Canon EF 100 - 400 mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II lens. I was shooting in aperture priority mode (AV) with a shutter speed of 1/2500 of a second at f8.0 and the ISO at 800. Do to the bright sun, I had a -1.0 Exposure Value. White Balance was set on auto. I was using single point, continuous auto focus with evaluative metering.

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