heron

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heron

(hĕr`ən), common name for members of the family Ardeidae, large wading birds including the bittern and the egret, found in most temperate regions but most numerous in tropical and subtropical areas. Unlike the remotely related cranes and ibises, which fly with their heads extended straight forward, herons fly with their necks folded back on their shoulders. Their plumage is soft and drooping and, especially at breeding time, there may be long, showy plumes on the head, breast, and back. Herons are usually solitary feeders, patiently stalking their prey (small fish and other aquatic animals) in streams and marshes and then stabbing them with their sharp, serrated bills. Most herons roost and nest in large colonies called heronries; others are gregarious only at breeding time; and some are entirely solitary. The nests vary from a sketchy platform of twigs high in a tree to a bulky mass of weeds and rushes built on the ground among the marsh reeds. American herons include the great and little blue herons, the green heron, the yellow-crowned and the black-crowned night herons (the latter known also as night quawk, because of its cry), and the Louisiana heron, called by Audubon "the lady of the waters." The great white heron of Florida, a little larger (50 in./125 cm long) than the great blue, is a striking bird sometimes confused with the American egret. Other large white herons are common in Africa. The European night heron ranges to India and N Africa. The odd looking shoe-billed heron (or stork, a misnomer) is found along the White Nile and the boat-billed heron in tropical America. Herons 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 Ciconiiformes, family Ardeidae.

heron

[′her·ən]
(vertebrate zoology)
The common name for wading birds composing the family Ardeidae characterized by long legs and neck, a long tapered bill, large wings, and soft plumage.

heron

any of various wading birds of the genera Butorides, Ardea, etc., having a long neck, slim body, and a plumage that is commonly grey or white: family Ardeidae, order Ciconiiformes

Heron

Patrick. 1920--99, British abstract painter and art critic
References in periodicals archive ?
when the bleeding continued a gynecologist ordered an ultrasound that revealed the cause: a 4-centimeter long Abortionist Warren Hern object, consistent with the curved portion of a fetus' skull, cutting into her uterine wall.
Hern: When I was representing franchisees across the country, when people called me to work on something, no one asked me if I was a Republican, or Democrat or independent.
As Hern and her colleagues on the West Coast and Adams and his cohorts on the East Coast rally support for their efforts, the outcome of their work rests on the shoulders of CCBC students like Leon Taylor, a 43-year-old father of three, who is determined to earn his college degree.
"Trade exchange volume between April 2009 and March 2010 was USD 419 million," said Hern, stressing that India hopes to double this volume and is seriously considering taking advantages of the opportunities available in Syria.
"We are and have always been focused on developing and producing 'cinema,' but are also mindful of the constant evolution of the distribution models," says Hern.
"Our main goal is sisterly support," Hern said, because only children of servicemembers know what other military kids are going through.
Mr Hern, who started teaching science at Ormesby more than five years ago, said: "Trying to inspire pupils is something we've been doing for years.
Apart from the Hern factor, Basaata has a clear chance based on her close fourth against some useful colts in similar grade at Glorious Goodwood last time and she should improve again as it was only her second run of the year.
Hern said he suspects that even if the law doesn't go into effect, many women in South Dakota will think the procedure is illegal.
That hern - and it really is a hern - has been a tern in my mind for more than half a century.
The colt was ridden in all his seven starts by Willie Carson, and Tregoning recalled Nashwan as the horse that saved the then wheelchair-bound Hern's career.
Hern, universally known as the 'Major' started training in 1957 and handled some of the greatest racehorses of the modern era, including the incomparable Brigadier Gerard, who beat Mill Reef in the 1971 2000 Guineas.