Family: (Ardeidae) Herons, Egrets, and Bitterns
Preferred Habitat: Fresh and saltwater marshes and swamps; wet agricultural fields.
Seasonal Occurrence: Abundant in all seasons. Breeds in our area.
Notes: Closely related to the Yellow-crowned Night-Heron, the Black-crowned Night-Heron is stockier in appearance with shorter neck and legs. Immatures of the two species are both streaked brown and not as easy to tell apart. Black-crowned Night-Herons are quite common within the Houston city limits. One of the easiest places to observe them is at the Houston Zoo where they make their nests in the live oak trees. They are often seen at dawn or dusk as they fly in small groups, uttering loud quawks and other croaks. They forage mainly in the evening. Unlike Yellow-crowned Night-Herons, Black-crowned Night-Herons often roost in the same tree with other herons.
- Susan Billetdeaux