While hiking at Lake Martin, I saw a female Anhinga perched on the top of a dead tree trunk sticking out of the water. Sometimes she faced away from the sun,
but more often she was staring into the morning sun.
Unfortunately, being confined to the shoreline of the lake and shooting between bushes, I could not find a viewing angle in which her eye was well illuminated.
Every so often, while facing the sun, the Anhinga opened her mouth in such a way that sunlight filled it, producing a bright red glow. It almost seemed she was swallowing the sunshine.
The Anhinga is commonly called the “snake bird.” I’ve read that anhinga actually does mean “snake bird” in the Brazilian Tupi language. Donnette has witnessed Anhingas swimming with their bodies submerged and their heads above water. She says they really did look like snakes on those occasions.
The location from which these photos were taken is shown on the map below. Zoom in for more detail.