The Charleston Lake in Charleston, Arkansas is a popular spot for photographers. On a recent visit, I was fortunate enough to witness a Great Blue Heron lifting off from the dam’s edge.I photographed it with the tips of its toes still touching the ground.

Great Blue Heron Lifting Off

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) Lifting Off

Delve into the breathtaking beauty of the Great Blue Heron! A species that commands attention with its towering height of 4 feet and massive wingspan of over 6 feet, the Great Blue Heron is a common sight near water bodies where it hunts for aquatic prey with its sharp beak. Its striking blue-gray feathers and long neck make it a magnificent bird that captures the heart of nature enthusiasts and photographers alike.

Immerse yourself in the wonders of nature, and who knows, you might just be able to freeze a moment in time through your lens that you’ll cherish forever! So, don’t miss out on this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to witness the splendor of the Great Blue Heron.

I photographed this Great Blue Heron while sitting in my pickup. I had my camera and lens resting on a bean bag draped over the open window of my pickup.

I posted a photo a few days ago of this same Great Blue Heron Taking Off from the deep section of this same lake near the Dam.

Gear Used:

  • Camera: Canon EOS R5
  • Lens: RF 100-500mm F4.5-7.1 L IS USM


  • Location: Charleston City Lake (Arkansas)
  • Date and Time Taken: January 23, 2023 (09:50 A. M.)
  • Exposure Mode: Manual
  • Aperture: f7.1
  • Shutter speed: 1/3200
  • ISO: 640 (Auto)
  • Exposure Compensation:  -1 EV
  • Focal Length: 500 mm