Snowy Egret

Ergetta thula

This highly colonial bird usually nests in mixed colonies with other herons. Both fresh and saltwater habitats are used as nesting areas. The flat, shallow nests are made of sticks and lined with fine twigs and brushes. They are usually built in trees or shrubs; nests built on the ground are more common in the west. The 3 to 4 greenish-blue, oval eggs are incubated by both adults. The young leave the nest in 20 to 25 days and hop about on branches near the nest before departing.

Red-crested Pochard

Netta rufina

The male red-crested pochards are the only waterfowl species to dive for food, bring up the vegetation, and then give to their mate, in the form of a ritualized feeding. Breeding occurs in the first year of life.


Feed mainly on musk grass, hornwort, pondweeds, mare’s-tail and milfoi 

Great Egret

Ardea alba

Animals of All Regions Back

Great egrets nest in colonies with other herons. Nests are placed in trees or shrubs, made of sticks covered with green material.

The great egret is the symbol of the National Audubon Society, one of the oldest environmental organizations in North America. Audubon was founded to protect birds from being killed for their feathers.

Wood Duck

Aix sponsa

Wood ducks are cavity nesters and typically choose to nest in a tree more than 1 foot and often 2 feet in diameter, with a cavity anywhere from 2 to 60 feet high (higher sites seem to be preferred). Trees near water are preferred, sometimes directly over water, but other times up to 1.2 miles (2 kilometers) away. If natural cavities for nesting are scarce, wood ducks readily use nest boxes. If nest boxes are placed too close together, many females lay eggs in the nests of other females.

Brown Pelican

Pelecanus occidentalis

The brown pelican is the smallest of the eight species of pelicans. 

The nest location varies from a simple scrape on the ground on an island to a bulky stick nest in a low tree. These birds nest in colonies, usually on islands.

Unlike most birds, which warm their eggs with the skin of their breasts, pelicans incubate their eggs with their feet. They hold the eggs under the webs that stretch from the front toes to the hind toe, essentially standing on the eggs to warm them.

American White Pelican

Pelecanus erythrorhynchos

White pelicans are colonial breeders, with up to 5,000 pairs per site. The birds arrive on the breeding grounds in March or April and nesting starts between early April and early June. The nest is a shallow depression scraped in the ground filled with some twigs, sticks, reeds or similar debris that has been gathered. After about one week of courtship and nest-building, the female lays a clutch of usually 2 or 3 eggs.


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