A New Month

February is when the Great Blue Herons return to Ohio to begin a new season of nesting. This photo was captured a couple of years ago at the Bath Road Heronry in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. Rob Blair posted: Looking forward to the beginning of another great season to experience and photograph them again!

The word February comes from the Roman festival of purification called Februa, during which people were ritually washed. The god was named after the festival, not the other way around which was the most usual process of naming. Nonetheless, we Anglos found a way to connect to the Romans, and to the gods.

The native American Indians, the Sioux, called this moon period (month) The Moon of the Long Haired Pony. What a wonderful way to connect to nature, to the earth. It’s also not a bad thought to call it the month of the Return of the Great Blue Heron.

Blue Heron Moon. I like it.

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