Medium-sized, slender white egret. Pale iris. Alternate Adult: all white plumage decorated in plumes. Red lores. Thin black bill. Dark legs with orange-red feet. Basic Adult: similar to breeding, but bright yellow lores and feet. Shorter plumes. Juvenile: white plumage. Thin bill, pale gray at base. Greenish lores, occasionally grayish. Yellow-green legs with black stripe and yellow-green feet. Very similar to Little Egret, which has pointy crown, thicker longer bill and paler lores. Breeding Little Egret has only 2 or 3 occipital plumes. Snowy Egret also similar to juvenile Little Blue Heron, which has dark (but difficult to see) wingtips, a thicker bill and usually paler lores.
Length: 24 (cm) Wingspan: 38 (cm)
Raspy. Ahh-rarrrr. Nasal squawk. Low pitched croak. Bubbly lulla lulla lulla.
Fresh and saltwater marshes or shallow bodies of water. Shorelines and mudflats. Bays and tidal flats.
Forages by stalking or standing still in water, then grabbing prey. Nests in colonies. Typically graceful in its movements, but occasionally darts about in a somewhat hyperactive manner.
Diet consists of fish, amphibians, crustaceans, mollusks, lizards, earthworms and aquatic plant material.
Expanded Life History
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Identification from Little Egret:
Snowy Egret has shaggy plumes on head and nape, Little Egret has two long plumes only.
Bill size/shape difference are as noted in species account. I am unaware of any difference in head shape, other than that created by the plumes.
Birds with both shaggy plumes and one or two long plumes have been seen in e. Canada and USA, and these birds are thought to represent variation in Snowy Egret.
Little and Snowy Egrets have hybridized in Barbados.by Steven Mlodinow on June 22, 2010 at 03:55 pm
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Has been known to hybridize in the wild with Little Blue Heron, and such hybrids (particularly immatures) might wreak havoc with identification.by Steven Mlodinow on June 22, 2010 at 03:55 pm
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|Activity||Date & Time|
|Dennis Davenport added Snowy Egret to their Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge smart list||9/04/2011 at 12:02AM|
|Dan Mitchell added Snowy Egret to their E G Simmons Park, Ruskin, Florida smart list||8/07/2011 at 8:47AM|
|Steven Mlodinow added a Behavior note to Snowy Egret Behavior Notes||6/24/2010 at 9:27PM|