|Look carefully and you'll see Clyde,|
the Rahway River black-crowned
This particular bird became a regular fixture on my nightly summertime walks near the Rahway, usually fishing at the same spot unless a human was already there with a rod and reel. There's something very meditative about watching a heron, and this fella has a sort of happy expression on his face, if birds can show emotion.
Not long after Ivan and I met, I mentioned the jazz bird and where he hung out, and somehow we decided to dub the night heron "Clyde." It seemed as good a name as any, even though we had no idea whether the bird in question was male or female. Apparently the only ones who can tell the difference are other black-crowned night herons.
If memory serves, Clyde usually shows up in May and hangs out until September, so I'm hoping he'll be back in the next couple of weeks. We didn't see him after Hurricane Irene swelled the Rahway several hundred feet beyond its banks late last summer, but I've got to believe he made it through the storm okay. I'll keep you posted.
And maybe when I see him again, I'll bring my sax over to the river and give him a little serenade. Riverside blues by moonlight... what a way to do one's birding.