Photograph by Justine Kibbe
The Green Herons are solitary, secretive and small for a heron (17 inches). They are often hard to spot, hunched over and half-hidden in vegetation at the edges of ponds, marshes, and small freshwater wetlands. They have a dark cap, a rufous-colored neck, a blue-green back, and bright orange legs. Their diet consists mostly of small fish, but they will also eat mollusks, crustaceans, reptiles, amphibians and insects.
The Green Heron is one of 12 tool-using bird species world-wide that is known to use bait to catch fish. Green Herons drop insects, feathers, and bread crusts (in places where people feed swans and ducks) to lure small fish. Of the 12 species, seven belong to the heron family.