I have only seen this bird once in our area, but what a treat it was. In general, this small Heron hunts by stalking and spearing fish, insects, amphibians, and small invertebrates from shallow water. A few of these birds, however, have been seen placing small insects onto the waters surface for fish bait! These birds are mostly solitary. When alarmed, this bird straightens its neck, flares its crown, and flicks its tail.
Dark green back and wings. Black crown. Chestnut colored neck and sides. White stripes from chin through breast and belly. Yellow eye and patch between eye and bill. Yellow and black bill. Yellow legs. Sexes similiar. 14 inches in length.
Open wetlands, marshes, and lakes.
3-6 pale green or pale blue eggs with a 21-25 day incubation period. Fledging occurs 34-35 days after hatching. The nest is made from sticks and is usually placed in a tree or dense thicket.
- Lake Murray, La Mesa
- Santee Lakes, Santee
- Famosa Slough, San Diego
- Wild Animal Park, Escondido