Saturday, 20 June 2015

Cattle Egret's Dotting The Savannah

Wild Kenya Safaris, www.wildkenyasafaris.com, Wildlife Diaries, Kenya Birds
The distinct white colour of Cattle Egrets are unmistakable in Kenya's National Parks

Unlike other herons that favour waterbodies such as lagoons, swamps and streams the cattle egret prefers to roam the grass patches and fields looking for their favourite prey that consists mostly of insects but also small vertebrae such as frogs, lizards and the like.

Gathering at times in dense colonies during their breeding seasons, these white coloured birds stand out unmistakably in the savannah lands of Kenya's national parks. The adults have yellow legs and attain a golden colour on their head and chest during breeding seasons while immature egrets have dark legs and beak until they mature.


Hundreds of Cattle Egret gathering to feed in the grassland

At times they can be found riding the backs of animals such as elephants, buffalo and zebra without any opposition as they pick off the ticks from their hosts bodies. While in other instances, cattle egrets closely follow the footsteps of large mammals walking through the grass as this thundering movement by the large mammals drives out insects from the grass making it easier for the birds to spot and eat them. 

You can listen to the sounds of cattle egrets in the recording below:


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