Sunday, 21 September 2008


A possible last thing a small mammal sees.
Fortunate group of visitors to Beddington (first time for some) who witnessed the Great White Egret- a one in (over) a hundred year event.

A first for the farm today, a Great White Egret, found by Grant and Frank Prater. There are four subspecies recognised: E.a alba (C Europe to C Asia), E.a. modesta (India to Australia), E.a melanorhynchos (Africa, S of Sahara) and E.a egretta (The Americas). Presumably this bird is of the nominate form alba.
In taxonomic terms Great White Egret is found within the order Ciconiiformes which is made up of three suborders- the Ardeae ( herons), Scopi (the hamerkop) and Ciconiae (storks, shoebill, ibises and spoonbills). Within the suborder Ardeae there is only one family the Ardeidae (herons) which is comprised of 17 genera, 60 species and 149 taxa. Great White Egret is in the genus Egretta (one of thirteen species) .
1 Great White Egret, present for 45 minutes in morning from 0845 before flying north-east. Visible migration: 2 Common Buzzard, 1 Siskin, 25+ Swallow, 4 House Martin, 15 Meadow Pipit, 1 Yellow Wagtail, 2 Chaffinch

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