Sunday, February 5, 2012

Breeding Great Egret with yellow cere against familiar green ones

While doing the Summer CAR count today we came across the following Great Egret.
The first reaction was that it was a Snowy Egret but on  careful look, considering the size, it was clear that it was a breeding Great Egret. While a breeding Great Egret had greenish cere, this one had yellow ones. It was in a swamp just next to the road. It was obscured by tall grass for proper identification. Only the mysterious head was sticking out.
Look clearly at the following images and give your opinion. Is this a Great Egret or not?

Great Egret with yellow cere

Breeding Great Egret
Further twenty kilometers down the road we came across this non breeding one. The was no doubt about it.

Non breeding Great Egret

1 comment:

  1. Hi to all,
    I recieved the following through my E-mail and I could not resist sharing it with you.

    Hi Mpho,
    By now you might have received some other replies?
    I think your photo is a Great Egret changing from breeding (with green cere) to non-breeding (with the bill starting to change colour from the cere, therefore yellow cere with black breeding-bill).
    Lisl van Deventer