Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)

Order: Pelecaniformes > Family: Ardeidae (Herons) > Genus: Ardea >

Species: Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)

The Great Blue Heron is the largest of the North American Herons, an adults wingspan averages between 66 – 79 inches, standing from 36 – 54 inches high and weighing between 4 – 8 lbs.

Great Blue Herons are grayish with slight azure blue flight feathers, red-brown thighs, and a paired red-brown and black stripe up the flanks; the neck is rusty-gray, with black and white streaking down the front; the head is paler, with a nearly white face, and a pair of black or slate plumes running from just above the eye to the back of the head. The feathers on the lower neck are long and plume-like; it also has plumes on the lower back at the start of the breeding season. The bill is dull yellowish, becoming orange briefly at the start of the breeding season, and the lower legs gray, also becoming orangey at the start of the breeding season. Immature birds are duller in color, with a dull blackish-gray crown, and the flank pattern only weakly defined; they have no plumes, and the bill is dull gray-yellow.

Learn more about the Great Blue Heron: All About Birds | National Geographic | Bird Web

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)

Photographer: Robert J Banach
Date: Nov. 2, 2014
Location: Northside Park, Ocean City, MD

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) | Ocean City Aves (Birds)

Photographer: Robert J Banach
Date: Nov. 2, 2014
Location: Northside Park, Ocean City, MD USA

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)

Photographer: Robert J Banach
Date: Nov. 4, 2014
Deep Water Lagoon, Northside Park, Ocean City, MD USA

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) | Ocean City Birds (Aves)

Photographer: Robert J Banach
Date: Summer 2014
Location: 60th St Bayside, Ocean City, MD USA

Order: Pelecaniformes > Family: Ardeidae (Herons) > Genus: Ardea > Species: Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)

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