egret(redirected from Egrets)
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EGRETAbbrev. 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.
REFERENCEPtitsy Sovetskogo Soiuza, vol. 2. Edited by G. P. Dement’ev and N. A. Gladkov. Moscow, 1951.
A. M. SUDILOVSKAIA