Little Egret

Egretta garzetta




Bitterns, Herons and Egrets (Ardeidae)

Code 4


Code 6



Egg Color:

Green blue

Number of Eggs:

5 - 6

Incubation Days:

21 - 25

Egg Incubator:

Both sexes

Nest Location:

On ground or in trees.

Nest Material:

Mainly sticks and plant stems.


Northern birds migrate



Little Egret: Medium-sized, all white egret with plumes on head, breast, and back, black legs with yellow feet, black bill, and yellow lores. Sexes are similar. Nonbreeding adult lacks head and back plumes, has gray lores, and shows yellow on lower legs. Juvenile resembles nonbreeding adult but lacks breast plumes and has mostly black legs. Difficult to distinguish from Snowy Egret.

Range and Habitat

Little Egret: A widespread species; can be found throughout southern Europe, southern Asia and Africa. Smaller populations can also be found in Australia. Never far from water and is usually found in large wetland areas, typically on mudflats and marshland, but it can also be found hunting in tidal estuaries or small streams.

Breeding and Nesting

Little Egret: Nests in colonies on ground or in trees. Lays five or six green blue eggs that both parents incubate for 21 to 25 days. Chicks make first flight when 40 to 45 days old.

Foraging and Feeding

Little Egret: Feeds along shorelines, in wet or dry fields, and may often follow cattle. Eats a wide variety of insects, small fish, crustaceans, amphibians and other small animals.


Little Egret: Generally silent or harsh croak.

Similar Species

Little Egret: Rare vagrant to North America. Snowy Egret has shorter neck and legs, rounder crown, and yellow facial skin continues over top of bill.

The upper front part of a bird.
Large, conspicuous, showy feathers.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X