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Little Egret in breakfast

Little Egret  in breakfast
Photo Information
Copyright: Jose Conceicao (jconceicao) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 369 W: 18 N: 842] (3174)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2008-09-21
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon 400 D, 75-300mm f4-5.6
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/1000 seconds
Map: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2008-09-22 12:27
Viewed: 4274
Points: 52
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
I take this photo in Tejo river - Samouco beach near Alcochete.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

The Little Egret, Egretta garzetta is a small white heron. It is the Old World counterpart to the very similar New World Snowy Egret.


There are at least two subspecies of Little Egret. The nominate subspecies E. g. garzetta occurs in Europe, Africa and Asia. E. g. nigripes breeds in Indonesia and Australasia. Those in Australia are sometimes thought to represent a third subspecies E. g. immaculata.
Several other egret taxa have at times been classified as subspecies of the Little Egret in the past but are now regarded as separate species. The Western Reef-Egret, Egretta gularis occurs on the coastline of West Africa (race gularis) and from the Red Sea to India (race schistacea). The Dimorphic Egret, Egretta (garzetta/gularis) dimorpha is found in East Africa, Madagascar, the Comoros and the Aldabra Islands.


Little Egret (Non-breeding plumage)stalking
The adult Little Egret is 55–65 cm long with an 88–106 cm wingspan. It weighs 350–550 grams. Its plumage is all white. It has long black legs with yellow feet and a slim black bill. There is . In the breeding season, the adult has two long nape plumes and gauzy plumes on the back and breast. The bare skin between the bill and eyes becomes red or blue. Juveniles are similar to non-breeding adults but have duller legs and feet. The subspecies garzetta has yellow feet and a bare patch of grey-green skin between the bill and eyes, whereas nigripes has yellow skin between the bill and eye and blackish feet.
Little Egrets are mostly silent but make various croaking and bubbling calls at their breeding colonies and produce a harsh alarm call when disturbed.

Distribution and habitat:

Its original breeding distribution was large inland wetlands and coastal wetlands in warm temperate parts of Europe, Asia, Africa and Australia.
In warmer locations, most birds are permanent residents; northern populations, including many European birds, migrate to Africa and southern Asia. They may also wander north after the breeding season, which presumably has led to this egret's range expansion.

Colonization of the New World:

The Little Egret has now started to colonize the New World. The first record there was on Barbados in April 1954. It began breeding on the island in 1994. Birds are seen with increasing regularity and have occurred from Surinam and Brazil in the south to Newfoundland and Quebec in the north. Birds on the east coast of North America are thought to have moved north with Snowy Egrets from the Caribbean.

Northward spread in Europe:

Until the 1950s, the Little Egret was restricted to southern Europe. Over the next few decades it became increasingly common in western France and later on the north coast. It bred in the Netherlands in 1979 with further breeding in the 1990s.
In Great Britain it was rare until the late twentieth century and almost certainly did not breed. In contrast, it has for just over a decade now become a regular breeding species and is commonly sighted, often in large numbers at favoured coastal sites. The first breeding record is generally accepted as having been on Brownsea Island in Dorset in 1996, although it has been claimed that the species bred in Sussex in the 1970s. There are now several colonies across southern England and the species bred in Wales for the first time in 2002.
In Ireland the species bred for the first time in 1997 at a site in County Cork.


The Little Egret nests in colonies, often with other wading birds, usually on platforms of sticks in trees or shrubs or in a reedbed or bamboo grove. In some locations such as the Cape Verde Islands, the species nests on cliffs. Pairs defend a small breeding territory, usually extending around 3–4 m from the nest. The three to five eggs are incubated by both adults for 21–25 days to hatching. They are oval in shape and have a pale, non-glossy, blue-green colour. The young birds are covered in white down feathers, are cared for by both parents and fledge after 40 to 45 days.


E. g. garzetta in Breeding plumage-actively catching prey in Kolkata, West Bengal, India.
This egret stalks its prey in shallow water, often running with raised wings or shuffling its feet. It may also stand still and wait to ambush prey. It eats a variety of small animals including fish, amphibians, crustaceans, and insects.


At one time, the plumes of the Little Egret and other egrets were in demand for decorating hats. They had been used for this purpose since at least the 17th century but in the 19th century it became a major craze and the number of egret skins passing through dealers reached into the millions. Egret farms were set up where the birds could be plucked without being killed but most of the supply was obtained by hunting which reduced the population of the species to dangerously low levels (stimulating the establishment of Britain's Royal Society for the Protection of Birds in 1889). Now conservation laws protect this species, and the population has rebounded strongly.
The Little Egret is not listed as a threatened species on the Australian Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999. However, it status varies from state to state within Australia. For example:
•The Little Egret subspecies E. g. nigripes is listed as threatened on the Victorian Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act (1988). Under this Act, an Action Statement for the recovery and future management of this species has been prepared.
•On the 2007 advisory list of threatened vertebrate fauna in Victoria, the Little Egret (E. g. nigripes) is listed as endangered

siggi, rcrick, erve, jaycee, crs, Dis. Ac., jrobertop, gracious, Argus, Amadeo, SelenE, scharan1, thor68, Evelynn, thiv56 has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Very good moment, Jose.
Difficult to recover all the highlight data in sunny circumstances.
Very good river impression in the semi-blurred background.

Hi Jose,
Great timing, composition and details are just fine, precise focusing.
Very well done!
Cheers, Andriy

Hi Jose,

Great shot, an excellent moment captured, right place at the right time, excellent detail, wonderful layers with the sand in the foreground, right though to the lake and the foliage in the background, perfect exposure in the whites of the plumage, lovely work, all the best,

Cheers Rick :)

  • Great 
  • erve Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 96 W: 3 N: 131] (620)
  • [2008-09-23 0:53]

Hi jose.

Excellent timing to catch this moment. good clarity and detail, i might have been tempted to crop a little tighter, but thats just me.



  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2008-09-23 10:08]

Hi Jose,

What a catch - for both you and the Egret. That's a big fish in his mouth!! He looks beautiful at the water's edge with his flowing plummage. Lovely shot of this pretty bird and pretty setting.


  • Great 
  • crs Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 469 W: 0 N: 922] (3551)
  • [2008-09-23 10:48]

Hello Jose,

You have captured a very good moment with the bird swallowing the fish. Image is focused well showing clearly the bird. There is a fine contrast between the white bird and the background.

Thank you for sharing,

Jose, this is an outstanding image of the egret feeding. You did a great job capturing this. Have a great day. Bill

Hi Jose,

great shot of this Egrit with the big fish.
Exellent pov and dof.
I like the plumage.
good notes too.


Olá José.
Fico impressionado com a coloração dessa plumagem.
A cena é sensacional... a imagem dispensa comentários!
Excelente definição, com detalhes bem afiados.
Acho que esse enquadramento está perfeito!
Parabéns por mais um belo registro!
José Roberto

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2008-09-24 6:23]

Hello Jose
A beautiful image, very clear and very good light. To the fished poor man its life is finished a greeting.
Regards Siggi

Ola Jose,
Excellent exposure and focus in capturing this beautiful Egret with it's food!
very sharp with nice colour and great details
well done
best regards

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2008-09-24 12:03]

Hello José,
Excellent timing in this capture of a Little Egret about to swallow a fish, taken with fine sharpness. Superb lighting, POV and composition too.
TFS this fine image,

  • Great 
  • izler Gold Star Critiquer [C: 1387 W: 3 N: 9] (44)
  • [2008-09-24 14:49]

merhaba jose
good timing and wonderful capture
i like composition, POV, sharpness and details

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2008-09-25 4:02]

Hi Jose,what a perfect moment to take the pic! Wonderfull timing and top quality of sharpness and colors,my best compliments,have a nice day,Luciano

  • EOSF1 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1393 W: 119 N: 5267] (23955)
  • [2008-09-28 11:23]

Hello Jose! Well done on this great capture! A great moment, well composed with a fantastic technique, thanks!


:-) tomorrow

Hola Jose, bonita fotografia y un gran momento captado.
Acertada exposición, color natural. Un saludo

Olá Jose

Ótima captura num momento decisivo...bela e fantástica imagem com ótima luz e nitidez.
Grande abraço,

Ciao Jose, great capture of beutiful eating Egret, fine details and splendid sharpness, superb composition, very well done, ciao Silvio

  • Great 
  • SelenE Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2249 W: 65 N: 4205] (13972)
  • [2008-10-09 1:12]

Ola Jose,
Nice catch for both of you :o) Good timing. TFS

  • Great 
  • Janice Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3277 W: 148 N: 6163] (18832)
  • [2008-10-11 0:05]

Hi Jose, what a catch for the bird - and you.
Good timing as the bird swallows the fish. Very sharp and clear. A little OE on the feathers, but still a lovely capture

Witaj Jose,
You seized unusual moment. White heron consumes fish. I am full admiration. Feathers went out nicely, and colours fantastic frame.
Pozdrawiam - Roma

and now: swallow! excellent shot showing the pretty egret with the catch of the morning! :-) good timing and nice details, the
white plumage really stands out against the dark background. well done & best wishes, thor.

Hola Jose
Una gran foto por momento y por la luz, los blancos también conseguidos, la nitidez, vamos que me gusta mucha tu foto.
Un saludo

You managed the bright white well in this shot of this pretty egret. I like the action you caught.

Evelynn ; )

Ola Jose!

Nice, sharp and clear shot! TFS.
But your subject is in the very centre of it. Imho, you should crop it, according to the "rule of thirds".

Hi Jose,
congratulation for your photo gallery.
In this one you have captured a very good moment with the bird swallowing the fish. Image is focused well showing clearly the bird. There is a fine contrast between the white bird and the background.

Hi Jose,

Excellent capture!

GRT CAPTURE INDEED!!!!!! natural colours, sharpness, composition in every aspect fine image, thanks

  • Great 
  • Zeno Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 483 W: 0 N: 1345] (10867)
  • [2010-08-19 4:05]

Hi Jose,

You were there at the right moment. Very good shot of this hungry little egret.


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