Heron Habitat Helpers


Wind Damage at KRO

Recent wind storms have wreaked havoc all over Puget Sound, but in particular they have knocked down two large alder trees at KRO, the Kiwanis Ravine Overlook property.

photo of fallen alder tree
photo of 2nd tree down

KRO has a wonderful loop trail that wanders around the property, but with these fallen trees, the loop trail is blocked. Hopefully, the Department of Parks and Recreation will help out.

photo of the wind damage.photo of more wind damage

Heron Monitor Reports on Local Herons

Debbie Jacobsen and Mike Marsh have become our new Heron Monitors and stepped in to replace Pam Cahn who left after many years of wonderful service. Thank you Pam! Debbie and Mike have brought fresh enthusiasm to the task of monitoring the herons in their new location in Commodore Park on the hill above the Hiram Chittenden Locks, and they have been snapping photos and giving weekly updates on the nesting and mating herons. Current members will be receiving these weekly reports during the nesting season.

  photo map of Commodore Park Rookery
Map of colony location, highlighted in pink.

The Chicks are hatching!

photo of young heron chick by Mike Hamilton
          photo by Mike Hamilton

The chicks are starting to hatch in the heron colony at Commodore Park. The cute little chicks are demanding food, too! Hatched eggs are dropping to the ground.

photo of hatched eggs recently collected


  photo of heron on the nest
photo of heron couple just after mating
photo by Deborah Jacobsen

Once a mate is chosen, and mating occurs, a 5-week process begins. After mating, 10 days pass before the female lays 3-5 eggs. The male and female share incubating duties for approximately 27 days, and then the chicks will hatch.

In this photo, nests are claimed and mates are sought after.

  photo of heron couples occupying their nests
photo by Deborah Jacobsen
photo of 2014 heron nests
photo by Deborah Jacobsen

The 2014 Commodore Park heron colony breeding season began the last week of February. 60 herons began searching for a suitable mate and claiming one of last year's 60+ nests. Later, other herons built more nests as needed.

Here are the herons at the beginning of their season, staging on the dock just east of the locks.   photo of herons staging on a nearby dock

Photos from our Heron Gallery

Here are some photos taken a few years back by a local photographer named Mike Hamilton. His photos are available on another website (see www.mikehamilton.biz), but he has graciously given us permission to publish some of his work.
photo of Great Blue Heron by Mike Hamilton © photo of Great Blue Heron by Mike Hamilton ©

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Volunteer Opportunities

  • Enjoy the pleasure and tranquility of weeding with the Restoration Committee folks in one of our Kiwanis Ravine native plant gardens.
  • Public Relations - Be the "go to" person for contacting local publications and community organizations telling them of HHH's accomplishments and activities.
  • Visualize and Staff SeaFair table - We need people to help conceive a display table at the annual Magnolia SeaFair event and to help staff that table.
  • Assist Outreach Committee in trying to improve Seattle's tree ordinance and be a "watchdog" for protecting the herons.
  • Inventory - Plan and conduct a tree inventory in the 500' GBH buffer area.
  • Start a Hospitality Committee to support our events.
  • Join the group of active members and eventually become a Board member.

Contact us at: volunteer@heronhelpers.org

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please send your request to: List Master