Birds in the News

Riding the Hip(po)

A Gray Heron hitches a ride.

A-well-a, everybody's heard about the bird—sorry for getting that stuck in your head for the rest of the day. But nothing short of a Trashmen siren is necessary to alert you to this footage out of Kruger National Park in South Africa, capturing a 100 percent real, live, this-is-not-a-test surfin’ bird. Or as we like to think of it, a Gray Heron quite literally ghost riding the hip.

Herons are known to use hippos as a perch from which to hunt fish, and hippos don’t seem to mind (Gray Herons only weigh between 2-4 pounds). But if this one managed to catch anything during her cruise, the shooter (a park visitor named Bernadette) didn’t get the moment on film.