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Reddish Egret
Egretta rufescens
– Family
Authors: Lowther, Peter E., and Richard T. Paul

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Reddish Egrets on foraging grounds, Dance Ground display; Florida, December

Breeding Range

In Florida, Bahamas, and Caribbean, typically nests on mangrove keys and dredge-material islands in mangroves (red mangrove [Rhizophora mangle], black mangrove [Avicennia germinans]), Brazilian pepper (Schinus terebinthefolius), often over water (small creeks or interior flooded flats; Rodgers and Schwikert 1986). In Bonaire, nests found in mangroves and also buttonwood (Conocarpus erectus; Voous 1983). In Texas, nests on natural and artificial islands in low vegetation (bisbirinda [Castela texana], Spanish dagger [Yucca sp.] and prickly-pear cactus [Opuntia sp.]; or sea oxeye [Borrichia sp.], sea purslane [Sesuvium sp.], goldenrod [Solidago sp.], ragweed [Artemisia sp.]); or on bare sand (Cahn 1923, Bent 1924, Bancroft 1927, RTP).

Forages on shallow coastal flats, ponds, and lagoons throughout range. Habitat types include wind tidal flats and alluvial overwash zones of barrier islands in Texas, open “banks” and ponds inside keys of Florida Bay, intertidal flats along Florida Peninsula, “cat’s-eye ponds” at natural passes, occasionally open beaches and reefs (ABC Is.; Voous 1983). Commonly found in hypersaline flats and lagoons, especially where solar saltworks are found (e.g., Inagua, Bonaire, Mexico). Rarely occurs inland in freshwater habitats such as Eleocharis marshes of Everglades or along shores of lakes and reservoirs.

Spring And Fall Migration/Winter Range

No particular seasonal distinction; same as Breeding range, above.