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Great Egret

This week I am posting about our wildlife here in San Diego County in Southern California. Here are my previous Wildlife posts for this week if you would like to check them out.

The Red Tail Hawk

The Great Blue Heron

I have a hard time finding wildlife as my dogs are always with me, and scare them off usually before I even see them, but I have managed to get a few wildlife photos, though most are not good quality pictures they seem to work okay in a blog.

Now, about this Egret… I got so confused when I went home to research this bird. All I knew was that it was some kind of white crane looking bird, a bit smaller than the Great Blue Heron. I had always thought these were Snowy White Egrets, but while researching I found out there are differences, and other birds that look so similar. The tips that lead me to this identification were the legs, feet, and bill. In the Great Egret, the bill is yellow, sometimes tipped in black. The legs and feet are always a dark black.

The main differences in the look alike cranes.

Great Egret has a yellow bill, and black legs and feet.

Great White Heron is the biggest, and has a yellow bill and pale yellow-grey legs.

Little Blue Heron has mostly white plumage, grey wing tips, grey-yellow bill with a black tip and legs.

Cattle Egret is white in the winter and an orange color in the summer, has a short bill in orange  and changes to yellow as an adult.

Snowy White Egret has yellow legs to bi color legs. (Yellow and black) the bill is mostly black, with yellow around the eyes.


What do you think?

20 Points

Written by Kim_Johnson


    • I had both birds in the snowy egret folder, I had no idea they were different birds, so it was easy to miss the differences. Only until I started posting did I notice the differences in the legs. Thank you Norman.

  1. Here, in spring, there were two. I took a lot of pictures of them. I like them a lot. I will see in the arrival and I will make a special post for them.