This small heron is solitary and often difficult to see in dense bushes and vegetation along rivers, ponds, marshes and lakes. It is most easily seen when it flies short distances across open water. It feeds by crouching low over the water on overhanging branches or from narrow muddy flats where it catches fish, insects, and other aquatic invertebrates. It has been seen swishing bread held in its bill in the water to attract and catch fish. The small inconspicuous twig nest is placed low in a shrub over the water.
The four-digit banding code is GRHE.