The ride paid off for the report of the Snowy Egret at Fort Atkinson in Jefferson County. It was still present when I arrived at 3:25 pm far off the road in a flooded field. This location is just east of the city on Hwy 106, south side of the highway. A life bird for me which made it exciting. Images were taken on May 29, 2014.
Binomial name: Egretta thula
Category: Bittern, Herons, and Allies
Size: 24” long, 41” wing span
Weight: 13 oz.
Habitat: Typically they are found on most coasts of the US and Mexico but sometimes can be found breeding inland in wetland areas, mudflats and beaches. They forage in both freshwater and marine habitats preferring shallow sheltered estuarine areas. The breeding range is from the lower Great Lakes and southwestern US to South America.
Diet: Fish, crustacean, insects and smaller reptiles.
Nesting: They nest in colonies, usually with other wading birds. They like platform type nests made of sticks in trees or shrubs. The nests are flat 14”-18” across, 8”-13” high, lined with rushes, grasses, sedges and twigs. 3-4 eggs are incubated by both adults before the young leave the nest which is 20-25 days.