Finally, an Okefenokee Wood Stork!

One of my goals as an aspiring conservation photographer is to capture as many different species as I can within the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge. When threats come against the sanctity of the Okefenokee, such as the current mining efforts nearby, I want my photographs to be a part in showing how many different species rely upon the Refuge.

Wood Stork, Mycteria americana, along the Suwannee River in the Okefenokee Swamp National Wildlife Refuge in Georgia, USA. © October 25, 2022.

So through all of my explorations to the Okefenokee, I have kept a species checklist and I’m always hoping to grab a new critter observation on each trip. But even after more than ten trips, some of the “easy” birds still evade my lens. Birds I commonly see everywhere else, such as Canada Geese and Blue Jays, just don’t show up when I’m within Refuge boundaries (although I hear those pesky Jays calling, they don’t come close enough for a photograph).

The Wood Stork, a signature bird of the swamp, had also become a nemesis bird for me within the Okefenokee boundaries. I’ve paddle miles and miles of canoe trails; I’ve taken several guided boat tours, I’ve walked the trails and drove the wildlife drives, but no Wood Storks!

But this was my trip! Before I even launched my canoe from the parking area of the Suwannee River Sill Recreation area, a Wood Stork sat regally perched atop a tall Cypress. All those excursions deep into the Okefenokee in years past only to find my first Wood Stork within the Refuge near a parking lot! I also caught a second Stork photograph a little bit up the Suwannee River towards Mixon’s Hammock. I finally got my Stork! Now where are those Jays! Lol


  1. My “nemesis” bird at the Okefenokee is the Red-headed Woodpecker. I see them but never close enough for a decent photo. Happy you got your stork shot.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve been lucky to photograph a few Red-headed Woodpeckers in the Oke. I’ve mostly seen them on the Upland Pine Trail at Stephen C Foster State Park. Try there! Happy New Year!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s