Cattle Egret - Koereiger

Cattle Egret


Bubulcus ibis

Pictures: Teus Luijendijk

All egret species have done well the past decade in The Netherlands. Great Egretta alba  and Little Egret Egretta garzetta  are now regular breeding birds and especially Little is here and there (esp. in the SW) just common, while Great is breeding in marshlands scattered throughout the country. A recent winter count of the latter species totalled over 80 birds.
Cattle Egret, however, is still a very rare breeding bird in The Netherlands. Only recently the first pair bred, in NW-Overijssel, in or near the reserve 'De Wieden'. This species is on the other hand more often encountered in winter and may then turn up almost anywhere.
The bird shown here was discovered near one of the waterworks in Oosterschelde. It was actively hunting for worms and other stuff on a windy day. It was so concentrated on feeding that it came very close to our car, only keeping to a more comfortable distance when I stood up to avoid the fence between us from disturbing the image.

  Cattle Egret  -  Koereiger  Bubulcus ibis   videograbs (20x), contrast somewhat enhanced.
  Kamperland Ze, The Netherlands, 14 January 2001.


Copyright ©Teus Luijendijk 2001