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Egretta rufescens  Reddish Egret
The Reddish Egret is a rare breeding species in Louisiana and on the Audubon WatchList for North America. These branch-nesting and colonial piscivores are strictly coastal, nesting on barrier islands. The white form or morph was relatively common prior to persecution by plume collectors in the late 1800's.

photos Copyright 1999 by Brian Miller 
immature (inset left); adult male or female (right)

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Egretta thula  Snowy Egret
These branch-nesting piscivores breed in the Mississippi/Red River and Coastal Marsh regions. They seem most common near the coast. The "Possible" records may represent nonbreeding individuals or birds that have commuted some distance from their breeding colonies to forage.

photos Copyright 1999 by Brian Miller 
adult male or female with juvenile (left); adult with courtship color (inset right)

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Bubulcus ibis  Cattle Egret
The spread of Cattle Egrets worldwide is attributed to conversion of woodland to pasture and irrigated fields. Cattle egrets invaded the U.S. by 1942 and Louisiana by 1955. These branch-nesting and colonial insectivores are now common across Louisiana. Relatively few breed in the Pine Region, which has fewer nesting sites and fewer pastures for foraging. It is likely that many of the "Possible" records are birds that do not nest in those immediate areas.

photos Copyright 1999 by Bill Bergen 
male (courtship colors) and female (inset)