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Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Great Egret - Ardea alba


Global Rank: G5
State Rank: SNA

Agency Status
USFWS: MBTA
USFS:
BLM:
PIF:


 

External Links





 
General Description
A large wading bird with all-white plumage; long black legs and feet; a long neck; and a long, straight, pointed, yellow bill; in breeding plumage, long white plumes extend from back beyond end of tail; average length 99 cm, wingspan 130 cm.

For a comprehensive review of the conservation status, habitat use, and ecology of this and other Montana bird species, please see Marks et al. 2016, Birds of Montana.

Diagnostic Characteristics
Differs from most other white herons in larger size (averages 23 cm longer than Reddish Egret, 38 cm longer than Snowy Egret), unicolored yellowish bill, and all-black legs and feet. Differs from the white form of the Great Blue Heron in having black legs and feet (versus yellowish).

Species Range
Uncommon Migrant

Western Hemisphere Range

 


Summary of Observations Submitted for Montana
Number of Observations: 98

(Click on the following maps and charts to see full sized version) Map Help and Descriptions
Relative Density

Recency

Breeding
(direct evidence "B")


Breeding
(indirect evidence "b")


No evidence of Breeding
(transient "t")


Overwintering
(regular observations "W")


Overwintering
(at least one obs. "w")



 

(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)



References
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Citation for data on this website:
Great Egret — Ardea alba.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from