While Tammy and I were on Anhinga Trail in Everglades National Park we were lucky enough to notice an American Bittern standing in the tall grass just next to the boardwalk. An American Bittern likes to sit verrrry still. This behavior, combined with its striped color pattern, gives it a very effective disguise in tall grass and reeds. It is very easy to walk right past this species and never notice it.
Like most parks that are easily accessed by lots of people, the majority of the wildlife goes unnoticed by the masses. This was the case on Anhinga Trail. Everyone "oooohed" and "ahhhed" over the large birds and the alligators that were impossible not to see. But hardly anyone noticed the small song birds, or this American Bittern. Only when someone stops to take photos, or obviously pay attention to some creature, will others stop to see what the fuss is all about. This phenomenon is the same as the traffic jams that I described in Yellowstone National Park.
Here are a couple photos of the American Bittern. Maybe some of the folks who saw me perched on the edge of the boardwalk taking pictures of this bird will remember that they completely missed this animal's presence. And then maybe they will wonder just how many other things they are missing. If you don't know something is there, then it is probable that you are not thinking about conserving it.