Reddish Egret: Medium egret with blue-gray body and shaggy, pale rufous head and neck. Bill is pink with dark tip. Legs are blue-gray. White morph has all-white plumage, black-tipped pink bill, and blue-gray legs. Feeds on fish, frogs and crustaceans. Direct flight with bouyant steady wing beats.
Range and Habitat
Reddish Egret: Locally resident in extreme southern Florida and along the Gulf Coast of Texas and Louisiana; also occurs in Mexico and the West Indies. Preferred habitats include marshes, shallow bays, and lagoons.
The Reddish Egret has a large range, estimated globally at 550,000 square kilometers. Native to the Americas and nearby island nations, this bird prefers subtropical or tropical forest and intertidal or supratidal marine ecosystems. The global population of this bird is estimated at 60,000 to 75,000 individuals and does not show signs of decline that would necessitate inclusion on the IUCN Red List. For this reason, the current evaluation status of the Reddish Egret is Least Concern.
Reddish Egret populations were devastated by commercial hunting in the late 1800s and early 1900s, when they were sought for their beautiful feathers.
According to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, there are only 1,500 to 2,000 nesting pairs of reddish egrets in the United States.
While populations have been recovering during the past century, this species is now threatened by the degradation and destruction of its preferred coastal habitat.
A group of egrets has many collective nouns, including a "congregation", "heronry", "RSVP", "skewer", and "wedge" of egrets.