Hi everybody,

What does "jack" mean in the following sentence, please:

"The heron pounded the air with its wings, jacked itself clear of the water and flew off down river."
(John Steinbeck, Of Mice and Men, last chapter)
In this context, Jack means to lift vertically
A :jack is a tool you use to lift a car in order to change a tire. So,
the heron's movements were similar to those of the tool. (In other
words, it did not effortlessly rise into the air.)
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We have herons around our lakes and canals. When they take off, they start to pump Emotion: wave their wings, take flight close to the water, then jack (move rapidly) their feet, tucking them under, and rise up into flight. Their wings are so large they mostly glide.
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Ah, thank you very much !