When we were at the Brigantine Division of the Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge in Oceanville, NJ last weekend, the weather did not cooperate with us. It was a very gray day and extremely windy. It was difficult to even open the car doors to get out. There were very few birds flying and those that did were just blown all over. There were Ospreys in all the nests along the Wildlife Drive, but only saw 1 flying very high in the air. There were large groups of Black Skimmers, mostly on the ground, but a few groups took off but were blown all over. I shot a few large groups of Skimmers on the ground also, for a few series of multi-image panoramas. On the way out of the Refuge, I noticed this one lone Black Skimmer fishing close to shore, skimming along. It was still very gray and overcast, but I got a series of shots of the Skimmer as it kept getting closer to us. They show the fishing technique of the Skimmer and how it got its name. When it thinks it has caught something the head bends down and it clamps down on the lower mandible to catch its meal. Many times it is just some debris in the water. It did not catch anything in that pass and it flew off, but it was fun to see.
That is an amazing hunting strategy!
They are fun to watch! Sometimes they seem surprised when they catch something. It is amazing to see a few working an area!