Bee Hive and the bird
<p>BEN BREWER/Press Gary Ghramm takes a step back from a blue heron extending its wings in the courtyard of the Bee Hive Homes in Coeur d'Alene on Friday. Normally a skittish bird, this particular heron took residence at the facility nearly a week ago and residents have been able to observe it up close and personal.</p>
Staff Writer | June 12, 2010 9:00 PM
COEUR d'ALENE - Blue herons tend to be reclusive, viewed only from a distance. Try to sneak up on one for a picture, it takes flight. This bird is people shy.
Except for the one at Bee Hive Homes.
The large heron flew in to visit the assisted-living site at 2100 E. Sherman last Saturday - and decided to stick around.
"The residents get a kick out of him," said owner Gary Ghramm.
The heron has been there, outside Bee Hive, each morning this week and hangs around throughout the day before flying away come evening.
It spends time on the roof, then drops lower once residents come around. It has taken to perching on a wrought iron fence and showing off its impressive wingspan.
"He comes and goes, I assume back to Fernan," Ghramm said Friday.
He's surprised that the heron lets him get close enough to touch it. Because they're a little clumsy and slow, they're skittish and like their space.
"It's amazing," he said. "They usually fly when you're two blocks away. He's a little nervous, but he lets us come up to him."
Feeding the heron is a bit tricky, though.
"We don't have many raw fish," Ghramm said with a laugh.
It even seems to be friends with the fish at Bee Hive.
'He's been in the koi pond, but he's never hurt any of the fish," Ghramm said. "He watches the gold fish pretty hard."
Ghramm and many of Beehive's 60 residents have taken to checking for the bird to start their mornings.
"They absolutely love him," he said.
Still, they're aware their feathered friend will fly south for the winter.
"Hopefully, he'll have a good memory of us and come see us in the spring," Ghramm said.