Wednesday, 3 September 2014

More Rare Herons!

Driving into work this morning I stumbled across the rarest bird I think I've ever seen on my drive to the office...the Snowy Egret! It had moved from its spot up the Conestogo River at the Glasgow Street bridge to the Northfield Drive bridge!  There it was sitting right out in the open beside a Great Egret.

When I got to the office I found that other coworkers had also seen the bird sitting on the rock and so we went back and I snapped a few shots for the blog!  For those of you not familiar with this species, it is rarely found in Ontario, with only a handful showing up here every year.  More typically they are found in the southern United States.

Snowy Egret.  Note the black bill with yellow at the base.
Snowy looking right at us!
A Great Egret, the larger and more common species for our area.
After this we headed to my work site in the GTA and stopped at Colonel Samual Smith Park along the lakeshore after work to see if we could see the rare Yellow-crowned Night-Heron that has been hanging around this area for a few weeks.  After looking around for a few minutes we finally spied it sitting up in a tree.  This bird is a juvenile so it lacks the distinctive yellow crown of the adult, but still a great bird to see!

Note the fine white spots on the wing that differentiate this from the more common Black-crowned Night-Heron
Yellow-crowned Night-Herons also have longer legs that their more common cousin
Also note the all black bill.  Black-crowned would have a yellowish lower mandible
Tired little guy!
Overall a great day of seeing rare herons.  Not sure if I will ever again see Snowy Egret and Yellow-crowned Night-Heron on the same day in Ontario!

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