The American Bittern is a marvel of God’s creation, demonstrating the unique creativity involved in many animals’ camouflage colorings. This wading bird is an extremely rare sighting for three reasons. First of all, the habitat of choice for this wading bird is marshes and bogs – places where you would not usually walk (and usually could not walk). Secondly, God gave this unique heron a color pattern that blends in perfectly with its surroundings, making it all but invisible in reeds and grasslands. If it thinks it has been seen, it will point its bill skyward and remain motionless. Its vertical striping, long neck, and narrow bill make it blend with the surrounding reeds perfectly, thus making it nearly invisible. Thirdly, the American Bittern only moves around at dusk, when light is waning and visibility is limited.
Though rarely seen, the bittern is more often heard. Its call is unmistakably unique, sounding much like a loud pump. Glu-Glunk, Glu-Glunk! The prehistoric and jungle-like sound is remarkable coming from such a small heron! The bittern winters in Central America and the southern states of the US, and can be found in places like the Florida Everglades during the winter. It spends its summers in the marshes and bogs of the northern US and Canada. God has given this reclusive bird a unique camouflaging ability that suits its surroundings and habits. Rarely seen and photographed, this unique Creation is yet another testimony to God’s creativity and providence for all His creatures – great and small!