|[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note|
|Im not a zoologist or an expert in birds. I have a strong feeling that this is the type of crane / ibis I saw. Do tell me the ID, should it not right.|
I hope this note is useful.
Common Name: Cattle egret, Garcilla bueyera
Cattle egrets are relatively small, stocky herons, with thick necks, completely white in color except when breeding, at which time they are adorned by orange buff plumes on their crown, back and foreneck (Wetmore, 1965; Scott, 1987). The bill is yellow and legs are yellow to green when not breeding, the bill and legs are pink to orange-red during the breeding season (Wetmore, 1965; Scott, 1987). Juveniles have black bills (Scott, 1987). Brooks and Balent (1996) reported sighting three anomalous individuals completely "peach/orange-buff" color in southern Florida.
The snowy egret, Egretta thula, which is taller and has a black bill and legs as opposed to adult cattle egrets which have a yellow bill and yellow-green or pink legs (Peterson, 1980). The legs and wings of snowy egrets are also relatively longer and the wing beat, when flying, is slower (Hilty and Brown, 1986).
Cattle egrets are common around marshes, farms, highway edges, pastures, plowed fields, and other altered habitats (Peterson, 1980). They are strongly migratory and juveniles may disperse thousands of miles in random directions (Kaufman, 1996).
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