i will say that is a little egret, the red toes could have been from wet mud?
Thanks Joe, the problem is that the colouring is pretty even. I am inclined to agree that it is a little egret as there are quite a few in Langstone Harbour. Assuming it is mud, there are no red clay soils about and these birds tend to remain local.
This second shot shows the bird leaving the waters edge. Had it been mud, it would have been washed off.
Let me also apologise for the image. I do not have a long telephoto at the moment as mine is still awaiting replacement. I have also now ordered the Bigma. When these lenses are available, things will get better on the image front.
Last edited by PeterD; April 15th, 2008 at 06:40 PM. Reason: Added second image
This is indeed a Little Egret. For a brief period during courtship, the lores and feet become reddish: I saw a bird with similar bare parts colouration at a local breeding site on Sunday evening last (13th).
Thanks Joe & Harry,
Harry your explanation has sealed it for me. It also gives an explanation why I have not seen this before. Little Egret it is.