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Author Topic: Little Green Heron  (Read 3156 times)

Chris Calohan

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Little Green Heron
« on: July 23, 2014, 04:48:24 PM »

His wingspan is less that both my hands tied at the thumbs making flapping motions.
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Paulo Bizarro

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Re: Little Green Heron
« Reply #1 on: July 24, 2014, 04:49:36 AM »

This is a nice bird indeed. I wish the photo had been taken slightly lower, not sure if it was possible.

Chris Calohan

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Re: Little Green Heron
« Reply #2 on: July 24, 2014, 03:38:05 PM »

Not without sharing the water with this guy:
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kikashi

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Re: Little Green Heron
« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2014, 04:00:55 AM »

Not without sharing the water with this guy:

Pah! Have you no dedication to your art, man?

Jeremy
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Paulo Bizarro

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Re: Little Green Heron
« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2014, 04:01:29 AM »

Not without sharing the water with this guy:

Ok, seems like a good reason to me:)

Chris Calohan

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Re: Little Green Heron
« Reply #5 on: July 25, 2014, 12:31:10 PM »

Pah! Have you no dedication to your art, man?

Jeremy

I have more dedication to my body after seeing what one of these guys did to a deer last spring.
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maddogmurph

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Re: Little Green Heron
« Reply #6 on: July 30, 2014, 07:20:13 PM »

!  Makes me happy to see this, there is one out side right now at my office and I couldn't identify it.  But there are much bigger green herons as well?  Now I'm curious to the difference, must investigate.  I'll go shoot that bird outside in the next few days...
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Maddog - Apologetically critical

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Chris Calohan

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Re: Little Green Heron
« Reply #7 on: July 30, 2014, 08:46:49 PM »

Most greens don't get much bigger than this but it is possible this guy was a juvenile and thus would be a bit smaller.
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syncrasy

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Re: Little Green Heron
« Reply #8 on: July 31, 2014, 10:09:14 AM »

This Green Heron looks like an adult. A juvenile bird would be browner with more streaking on the neck. See the All About Birds Green Heron page (Cornell Univ).

Also, in case the ambiguity of this thread's title is confusing some readers... from a nomenclature standpoint there is no such bird as "Little Green Heron." In North America the bird species with "heron" in the name are:

  • Green Heron
  • Black-crowned Night-Heron
  • Yellow-crowned Night-Heron
  • Tricolored Heron
  • Little Blue Heron
  • Great Blue Heron

(Egrets and bitterns are also types of herons. All belong to the family Ardeidae.)

Interesting fact about Green Herons: they are one of the few bird species in the world known to use tools. Some individuals will use small found objects as fishing lures to entice fish to the surface of the water in a practice sometimes called "bait fishing." Here's a Green Heron I observed using a piece of bark as a lure:


« Last Edit: July 31, 2014, 10:14:38 AM by syncrasy »
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maddogmurph

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Re: Little Green Heron
« Reply #9 on: July 31, 2014, 01:09:34 PM »

Aha!  I was confusing the green heron with the black-crowned night heron.  I had never seen a green heron before.
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Chris Calohan

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Re: Little Green Heron
« Reply #10 on: July 31, 2014, 04:33:11 PM »

This Green Heron looks like an adult. A juvenile bird would be browner with more streaking on the neck. See the All About Birds Green Heron page (Cornell Univ).

Also, in case the ambiguity of this thread's title is confusing some readers... from a nomenclature standpoint there is no such bird as "Little Green Heron." In North America the bird species with "heron" in the name are:

  • Green Heron
  • Black-crowned Night-Heron
  • Yellow-crowned Night-Heron
  • Tricolored Heron
  • Little Blue Heron
  • Great Blue Heron

(Egrets and bitterns are also types of herons. All belong to the family Ardeidae.)

Interesting fact about Green Herons: they are one of the few bird species in the world known to use tools. Some individuals will use small found objects as fishing lures to entice fish to the surface of the water in a practice sometimes called "bait fishing." Here's a Green Heron I observed using a piece of bark as a lure:




Up in the Okefenokee Swamp they have a Gray heron and a White heron. The differentiation between the white heron and a great white egret is the head plumage (the long feathers) during mating which I was told gets much darker and their beaks do not go green like those of the great white egret.
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syncrasy

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Re: Little Green Heron
« Reply #11 on: July 31, 2014, 05:48:02 PM »

Up in the Okefenokee Swamp they have a Gray heron and a White heron. The differentiation between the white heron and a great white egret is the head plumage (the long feathers) during mating which I was told gets much darker and their beaks do not go green like those of the great white egret.

The Gray Heron is an "Old World" heron (native to Europe, Asia, and Africa but not North America). The "Great White Heron" is considered a subspecies of the Great Blue Heron.

From the Great Blue Heron page at All About Birds:

"An all-white subspecies [of Great Blue Heron], the Great White Heron, is found in coastal areas of southern Florida, along with individuals that are intermediate in plumage (showing a grayish body with a mostly white head and neck), known as 'Würdemann’s Heron.'"
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Chris Calohan

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Re: Little Green Heron
« Reply #12 on: August 01, 2014, 09:00:29 AM »

Be that as it may on the Gray heron, but I've seen one and it wasn't blue, it wasn't white and it was pointed out by a 37 year veteran guide as a Gray...sometimes the books are wrong...or maybe not.
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syncrasy

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Re: Little Green Heron
« Reply #13 on: August 01, 2014, 11:54:20 AM »

Be that as it may on the Gray heron, but I've seen one and it wasn't blue, it wasn't white and it was pointed out by a 37 year veteran guide as a Gray...sometimes the books are wrong...or maybe not.

The books aren't wrong in terms of expected native species, so my original list of North American herons is correct.

Vagrants from Europe and Asia do wander to North America on occasion (and would generate a "rare bird alert" amongst birders) and there have been reports of Gray Herons in North America (see the Gray Heron page at Animal Diversity Web), but an Internet search turns up only one confirmed North American report (in Newfoundland, Canada).

Remember that Gray Herons (Ardea cinerea) and Great Blue Herons (Ardea herodias) are similar in appearance (the Great Blue is actually more gray than blue). So while it's remotely possible you saw a Gray Heron in the Okefenokee Swamp, it's more likely that your veteran swamp guide was wrong and that you both saw a normal American (gray-colored) Great Blue Heron. Too bad you didn't get a photo ;).
« Last Edit: August 01, 2014, 12:02:27 PM by syncrasy »
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Chris Calohan

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Re: Little Green Heron
« Reply #14 on: August 01, 2014, 12:13:50 PM »

He was just too far away to get the detail it would have to have to show it's colors and getting there meant going through waters full of quite large alligators who were at the height of their breeding season in a 14' boat . Some things are best left alone.
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