Dean M. Chriss
Great Egret Landing, St. Augustine, Florida

Great Egret Landing, Florida

(Click image to enlarge)

This photograph was taken near St. Augustine, Florida, as a great egret prepares to land in the top of a tree on a rather breezy day. Shades of black and white accentuate the graceful form of the bird, leaving the eye undistracted by colors. Great egrets (Ardea alba) are large, long legged, wading birds with a length of approximately 32 inches and a wingspan of about 55 inches. Their bills are long, thick, and yellow, their legs and feet are black, and their plumage is entirely white. They sport green eye patches during their mating season. Great egrets are often confused with great white herons, which can be distinguished by their yellow legs.