There is a Snowy Egret (Egretta thula) who hangs out near the pond outside my office at CSU Stanislaus. Though not at all tame, it tolerates the presence of people (and people with cameras) pretty well, so I got some close shots while out walking today. The egrets are such graceful and elegant birds!
Their beautiful feathers were almost their undoing as a species, as they were widely used for fashion accessories in the 1800s. Early conservation efforts allowed them to thrive and expand. They are found all over North and South America today.
It's such a privilege to see such a beautiful bird so close (with a zoom lens of course)!