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While walking through the polar bear habitat at the Detroit Zoo, I spied some heron-like birds that just didn’t seem to fit the “arctic” theme. A quick chat with a zoo volunteer confirmed my heron suspicions – the birds were black-crowned night herons. The friendly docent told me that the herons migrate to the zoo’s polar bear exhibit every summer and nest in the trees around the edge of the habitat. There were at least a dozen female herons around the zoo, but I only ever saw this one male. He was keeping an eye out from the viewing station roof while a visiting polar bear wandered below him.

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