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Related to Egrets: snowy egret, cattle egret, Egretta garzetta


(ēgrĕt`), common name for several species of herons of the Old and New Worlds, belonging to the family Ardeidae. Before they were protected by law the birds were nearly exterminated by hunters seeking their beautiful, white, silky plumage called aigrettes, used in millinery. These feathers develop during the breeding season. In the American egret the plumes are straight, about 21 in. (52.5 cm) long, growing on the back. The smaller snowy egret, or snowy heron (Leucophoyx thula), the most beautiful and most hunted, has curved plumes on the back, head, and breast. The reddish egret (Dichromanassa rufa) is white part of the year, changing to grayish with brown head and neck. The greater and lesser egrets are European species. Egrets are classified in the phylum ChordataChordata
, phylum of animals having a notochord, or dorsal stiffening rod, as the chief internal skeletal support at some stage of their development. Most chordates are vertebrates (animals with backbones), but the phylum also includes some small marine invertebrate animals.
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, subphylum Vertebrata, class Aves, order Herodiones, family Ardeidae.


Abbrev. for energetic gamma-ray experiment telescope. See Compton Gamma Ray Observatory.



a genus of birds of the order Ciconiiformes. There are nine species of egrets distributed widely in tropical and subtropical zones. In the USSR there are two nesting species, the great white heron (Egretta alba) and little egret (E. garzetta), and two casual species, the lesser egret (E. intermedia) and Swinhoe’s egret (E. eulophotes), which are found in Primor’e. The plumage is white; some species have elongated, decorative feathers (aigrettes). The birds nest in colonies, and the nests are built on bent reeds and rushes, in trees and bushes, and along the shores of bodies of water. There are three or four eggs in the clutch. The hatching takes 25–26 days. Egrets feed on small fish, insects, and small mammals. In the 19th and 20th centuries, because of the high value placed on egret plumes and the growth of the millinery industry, egrets were in danger of complete extinction. In the USSR they are protected by law.


Ptitsy Sovetskogo Soiuza, vol. 2. Edited by G. P. Dement’ev and N. A. Gladkov. Moscow, 1951.



any of various wading birds of the genera Egretta, Hydranassa, etc., that are similar to herons but usually have a white plumage and, in the breeding season, long feathery plumes (see aigrette): family Ardeidae, order Ciconiiformes
References in periodicals archive ?
Unfortunately, double-crested cormorants - also colony nesters - have pushed their way into the night-heron and egret nesting area, and the nesting activity of the cormorants has increasingly become a concern.
Naked, dry and dead solid sticks were being predilected by Cattle Egrets but in case of unavailability of those materials, breaking live twigs off the nesting tree i.
At one time Cattle Egrets were commonly seen in many parts of the capital, near ponds and hovering around cattle herds or on their backs catching the insects on their backs with their long beaks.
WINGING IN: Ireland has become a top destination for exotic species like the Little Egret and the Hobby (inset) Pictures: ERIC DEMPSEY birdsireland.
Snowy egrets are typically about 20 inches long with wingspans of 38 inches.
Animal welfare officials made arrangements for the bird, a cattle egret, to board a British Airways flight to the Portuguese airport of Faro after it was found in Shetland about three weeks ago.
The range of Cattle Egrets (Bubulcus ibis) has been expanding in North America for nearly 50 years (Crosby 1972; Telfair 1994).
OCCASIONALLY mistaken for a discarded white supermarket shopping bag during my less attentivemoments (oh, come on, we've all done it), watching little egrets on a sunny day is a winter experience to savour.
No regrets, just egrets in 800 acres behind the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.
Instead, his brush weaves a story where fish emerge from a woman's mouth and egrets from the sea.
Now, visitors can stroll along a path that weaves along the marsh, offering views of egrets, herons and other spectacular bird species.
Little Egrets have already made that northbound move, and have bred in North Wales since 2000.