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Although there are thousands of egrets, comorants, frigates and pelicans in my neighborhood, one lone cocoi heron stands guard in front of the riverhouse.  Thanks, neighbor!

Although there are thousands of egrets, cormorants, frigates and pelicans in my neighborhood, today one lone cocoi heron stood guard in front of the riverhouse. Thanks, neighbor!

(Webster’s II – Office Edition 1984)
Incongruentadj. 1. Not congruent. 2. Incongruous
Incongruousadj – 1. Not corresponding: disagreeing  2.  Made up of diverse or discordant elements. 3. Unsuited to the surroundings or settings.
Congruentadj. 1. Corresponding: congruous.
Congruousadj – 1. /Corresponding in nature or kind.

Jama & El Matal Ecuador – February 2014
If this last bend of Rio Jama were populated with thousands of Cocoi Herons and few egrets, a different species might be featured above!   There’s something special about close encounters with elusive species.   On the first day of this year, the distinct call of the lone osprey whispered, ‘I’m back; did you miss me?” (Yes, I did!)

Roosting egrets at sunset  streak home in low light!

Roosting egrets streak home in low light!

Equally elusive is the lone Cocoi Heron, a pearl of a recluse that dodges society. At times this feathered beauty stands guard in the mud flats upriver, or it edges closer to the ibis and egrets that forage beneath the blue-green mangroves. Quite shy and untrusting, it soars away at the slightest hint of human presence. Today, however, this closest neighbor of mine stood guard slightly downriver from the house while rough-winged swallows flitted nearby!

Cocoi Heron Stands Guard

Cocoi Heron Stands Guard

Gazing out the other windows, I’ve observed a different scene for over a month. I’ve briefly mentioned this new activity, though I’ve tried to dismiss it; this daily intrusion sometimes lasts into the night.

What's the loss of a few more mangroves to a monster-eater like this machine?

What’s the loss of a few more mangroves to a monster-eating machine?

Would you describe the two views as incongruent?  One side immerses one in nature; the other represents chaos.

The owners of the shrimp onds discarge the water from this canal.  (They are organic ponds - zero chemicals used here!)

January 09, 2014 – One week after devastating high tides assaulted nearby El Matal… How did this work rate more important than the crisis at El Matal? One month later, the tides attacked again. The tide charts warned of these spring tides, yet the year-long pleas for help failed to get assistance.

Here by my house, they’re replacing a man-made outlet that worked quite well – out with the old, in with the new… (I’m not sure who ‘they’ are – if it’s the local municipality or if it’s funded by the province.)

View from the other side - before work began!

View from the far side – before work began!

The trees provided shade, stabilized the bank and provided habitat for wildlife. (Shrimp harvest)

View from the river side – The trees provided shade, stabilized the bank and provided habitat for wildlife. (Shrimp harvest)

Shrimp Harvest: CLOSE THE GATES!

Shrimp Harvest: CLOSE THE GATES!

I mourn the loss of this lovely mangrove tree.

I mourn the loss of this lovely mangrove tree, removed in 2012 in phase one of mangrove destruction!   Accelerated erosion began after the loss of the trees.  Its surviving siblings bit the dust (mud) last month when the new ‘bridge’ work began.

Today's view - (They poured concrete during the night) - wonder where they get their materials?

Today’s view – (They poured concrete during the night) – wonder where they get their sand?

//

Did anyone note the beach sand? (Above photo – sand delivered around noon today.  Photo below, taken near sunset today)

Definitely improved - strong enough for a 747 touchdown!

Strong enough for a 747 touchdown!

Beneath the chaos are the  public waterlines.  I cannot imagine why there's no water coming to the house!

Beneath the chaos are the public waterlines.

Wonder why the water isn't reaching the meter?

Wonder why the water isn’t reaching the meter?

…….

It’s a bit incongruent that this project warranted more importance than the vanishing beach at nearby El Matal.   After surrendering to the no-water blues, I tweaked my view back to the river and its self-appointed guardians.

Sigh;  the incongruent view negated my stress, and I left my troubles at the roadside.

P1950408 herpm

The Guardian of the Mangroves and the Riverhouse – Cocoi Heron

Subtle waves rolling upriver suggest stronger breakers on the coastline.

Subtle waves rolling upriver suggest stronger breakers on the coastline.

The river ebbed higher, and subtle rolling waves tipped upstream and smacked the usually-quiet riverbank.  The cocoi heron clocked out for the day, and the night herons began their nocturnal shift.  The waves suggested that the ocean was building strength. I thought of my friends, several miles on the other side of the river, filling sandbags and preparing for the next aguaji.

As the sun sets, the night shift begins.  (Yellow-crowned night heron)

The sun sets, and the night shift begins. (Yellow-crowned night heron)

How can one not sleep well when watched over day and night  by the guardians?

How can one not sleep well when watched over day and night by the feathered guardians?

Is there a guardian that watches over the coastline? If so, El Matal needs an army of them ahora – NOW!  Z

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