Great Egret II

D R Moore

Jupiter, United States

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Artist's Description

The Great Egret (Ardea alba), also known as the Great White Egret or Common Egret is a large bird with all-white plumage.
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|The Males and females are identical in appearance; juveniles look like non-breeding adults. A juvenile is 37-40.9 inches in length with a wingspan of 51.6-57.1 inches and weighs 35.3 ounces. The adult is 94-104 centimeters in length with a wingspan of 131-145 centimeters and can weigh 1000 grams.||

The Great Egret can be distinguished from other white egrets by its yellow bill and black legs and feet, though the bill may become darker and the lower legs lighter in the breeding season. In breeding plumage, delicate ornamental feathers can be seen on the back.

They nest in colonies with other species, in shrubs and trees over water, and on islands the nest is made with sticks and covered with green material.

They Feed in variety of wetlands, including marshes, swamps, streams, rivers, ponds, lakes, tide flats, canals, and flooded fields. They will eat fish, invertebrates, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and small mammals.

The Great Egret is not normally a vocal bird; at breeding colonies, however, it often gives a loud croaking cuk cuk cuk.

It has a slow flight, with its neck retracted. This is characteristic of herons and bitterns, and distinguishes them from storks, cranes, ibises and spoonbills, which extend their necks in flight.

Plume hunters in the late 1800s and early 1900s reduced North American populations by more than 95 percent. The populations recovered after the birds were protected by law. No population is considered threatened, but the species is vulnerable to the loss of wetlands.
The Great Egret is the symbol of the National Audubon Society, one of the oldest environmental organizations in North America. Audubon was founded to protect birds from being killed for their feathers.

This image was Captured in Jupiter, Florida with a Canon 450D using an EFS 55-250mm lens
Focal Length 250mm
Exposure Time 1/640s
Aperture F5.7
ISO-400
This images was featured on the redbubble Homepage 8/16/2010
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