Little Egrets are all-white-bodied. They have long, thin necks, long black bills, yellow eyes, yellow facial skin (lores), long black legs, and yellow feet.
During the breeding season, Little Egrets have wispy feathers on the backs of their heads, lower throats, and backs. Facial skin turns red, and their feet turn pink or red at the height of courtship.
There are also dark morphs that have bluish-gray coloring instead of white.
Juveniles look the same as the adults but are more grayish/brownish and have greenish-black legs and duller yellow feet.
- Egretta garzetta
- Length: 22 – 26 in (56 – 66 cm)
- Weight: 17.6 oz (499 g)
- Wingspan: 34 – 41 in (86 – 104 cm)
Little Egrets’ usual range is Europe, Asia, and Africa, but they are recognized as casual visitors to the US and Canada.
Habitat And Diet
You can find Little Egrets around wetland areas like lakeshores, riverbanks, ponds, lagoons, marshes, and canals, but they will also hunt in fish ponds.
Little Egrets eat fish as their primary food by either standing still and waiting for fish to come or disturbing the water to scare them out.
Little Egret Calls:
Nests of Little Egrets are usually made of platform sticks and built high up in the trees or shrubs, in reed beds or mangroves. Males usually find and carry the material for building, and the females do the construction.
The female usually lays up to six eggs which both parents incubate for around three weeks. Both parents also take care of their young for about two weeks. They fledge after six weeks.
The Little Egrets once became extinct in Ireland and Great Britain due to overhunting because of the demand for feathers for decorating hats that were the rage in fashion during that time.