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Little egret


Common name Little egret
Scientific name Egretta garzetta
Type Waterbirds
Status Wintering

Large wader (approx 65 cm or 25.5 in) with white plumage. Black bill and legs with yellow toes. During the breeding season, it exhibits a plume of white feathers on its head. Small area of yellow skin in front of the eye. In flight typical silhouette of herons with the neck bent in the shape of an "s" and stretched legs.


Wetlands, River and Riverside

Where it lives

Saline or freshwater wetlands with calm and not very deep waters, with tree vegetation in the perimeter. Lagoons, riverbanks, reservoirs, irrigation ditches and flooded areas close to farmlands

How it lives

Species present in the province all year round, both as wintering and as summer, although it is a rare breeder. Nest in trees, in common colonies with other egrets. One laying in April of 3 to 5 eggs. It captures all kinds of small vertebrates (fish, reptiles, amphibians, micromammals), insects and other invertebrates that can be found by digging up the mud with its legs.

Where it can be seen in Malaga

Frequent and common species. Reservoirs and low courses of coastal rivers around the littoral. Fuente de Piedra and Campillos lagoons. Mouths of the Guadalhorce and Vélez rivers.

Curious facts

Egrets are medium sized herons compared to other herons. In fact, their Latin name reflects this. "Egretta" means "little herons". But their size is not an obstacle to their elegance and bearing, clearly distinguishable when seen in the field. Formerly their feathers were used to decorate the most elegant lady's headdresses.

Similar birds
Wintering Summer Resident Migration