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Bird Details

Long Legged Waders Long Legged Waders

Least Bittern

Ixobrychus exilis

Least Bittern
copyright Barb Winterfield
Length: 13 in. (33 cm)
This tiny heron occurs in swampy vegetation, brackish marshes and mangroves. It is most easily seen when it flies across open areas among the vegetation. When threatened, it will cling to vertical stems and freeze in position, pointing its bill upward and mimicking bull rushes and other aquatic vegetation. The Least Bittern gleans insects and amphibians from stalks and leaves and also catches fish and aquatic invertebrates at the water's edge. Its nest is made of sticks and placed near the ground or over the water in dense vegetation. The four-digit banding code is LEBI.
least_bittern_1.jpg

Male
copyright Barb Winterfield

Marsh / swamp
Marsh / swamp

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Male
Warbling (sound type)
Bird Song
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CR_LEBI_051802_S.jpg
Male
Warbling (sound type)
Bird Song

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Be part of Ask A Biologist

by volunteering, or simply sending us feedback on the site. Scientists, teachers, writers, illustrators, and translators are all important to the program. If you are interested in helping with the website we have a Volunteer page to get the process started.