Adult Little Blue Herons are actually not so little. They’re medium to large-sized with long, elongated bodies. Their heads and necks have a purplish hue with dangling feathers across the nape.
Their eyes are pale yellow and may turn gray-green during the breeding season. Their long, dagger-like bills are two-toned – pale blue or grayish with black tips. Their bodies are slate-blue. Their legs are long and black to gray-green.
Juvenile Little Blue Herons are totally white during their first year of life before becoming a mix of dark gray, blue, and white.
- Egretta caerulea
- Length: 24 – 29 in (61 – 74 cm)
- Weight: 16.22 oz (460 g)
- Wingspan: 40 – 41 in (102 – 104 cm)
Little Blue Herons breed in eastern US States before migrating south, but those along the Gulf Coast and Mexico into south America remain all year.
Habitat And Diet
You can find Little Blue Herons around water, whether in swamps, marshes, ponds, streams, lagoons, tidal flats, canals, ditches, fish hatcheries, or flooded fields.
Little Blue Herons forage in a more graceful motion compared to other herons. Rather than dashing about across the water, they merely stand and wait in shallow waters for their prey.
The diet of Little Blue Herons is fish, frogs, snakes, turtles, spiders, crustaceans, mice, and insects. Adults tend to forage alone, while juveniles prefer to stay with mixed groups.
Little Blue Heron Calls:
Nests of Little Blue Herons are made from sticks and usually in colonies with other herons. The female lays up to six eggs. Both parents also share in the incubation for up to twenty-four days.
Because of the white coloring of Juvenile Little Blue Herons, their presence among Snowy Egrets so they can catch more fish and have extra protection against predators.