Cattle Egret (breeding plumage)
Family: (Ardeidae) Herons, Egrets, and Bitterns
Preferred Habitat: Fields and pastures.
Seasonal Occurrence: Abundant throughout the year. Breeds in our area
Notes: Cattle Egrets are native to Africa and Asia. They arrived in the United States in the 1940's and made their first appearance in Texas in 1954. They are now one of the most common egrets to be seen in Houston, where they are often spotted in fields and along watercourses. When in breeding plumage, the yellow bill of Cattle Egrets becomes orange and their heads and backs also acquire an orange wash. Cattle Egrets eat primarily insects. They nest in mixed heronries, usually with Snowy Egrets and Tricolored Herons.
- Susan Billetdeaux