Gigantic heron strolls casually through fish market like he owns the place

Great blue herons of the Galapagos Islands are usually solitary and mysterious birds. They are enormous birds, reaching a height of 1.5m (over 4.5 feet). They can also live for up to 15 years. Generally, they are found in marshes and wetlands, keeping to themselves as they feed on small fish, frogs and other small animals that are found at the edge of bodies of water. They have been known to eat small rodents, lizards, and even turtle hatchlings. But this large bird has found an unusual place to look for a meal. He is at the fish market on the island of Santa Cruz, and he has come to check on the catch that is being brought in by the fishermen. Unafraid of the humans that walk about, he struts through the busiest spot in the town as if he owns the place. He is waiting for a handout from the men who are cleaning their catch, and he will not be disappointed. Scraps fall on the ground and stray skins and guts are flung about as the fish are quickly cut and prepared for sale. The people of the town wait excitedly to make their purchase of the freshest fish possible. The tourists gather to see the excitement and to photograph the activity, along with the animals that come to beg for the leftovers. The fishermen here are like all of the residents of the Galapagos Islands. They respect nature and the delicate balance that we cannot interfere with. For this reason, feeding wildlife is usually avoided, no matter how much they beg or how pitiful they cry. The baby sea lions that come and stare longingly will test the men's resolve with the most heart breaking sounds as they cry hungrily for a snack. But even the hardest of hearts will melt a little when the animals like this heron wait so patiently for a share. And it does little harm to toss the scraps out to the animals when they were just going into the garbage and to the dump where they will be found by the animals all the same. This heron has had a decent share and he has realized that the feeding time is over as the fish have all been carted away or sold at the counter. He walks casually out of the cleaning station and along the sidewalk to make his way back to the shoreline where he will take up a position at a tide pool and wait for the next meal to find him. A trip to the Galapagos Islands will provide the nature enthusiast with endless possibilities for observing nature.