LIFER: Striated Heron

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Striated Heron hunting for insects around sunset on November 29 2019. Pictures by Michelle Pors-da Costa Gomez

One of the most elusive herons on Curacao is the Striated Heron. As a very rare visitor from South America, this heron species which is known in Dutch as the Mangrovereiger (Mangrove Heron), has been spotted sporadically on the islands of Curacao and Bonaire and more often on the latter. As such it is not a LIFER for the island of course, but indeed a personal LIFER for us.

So when we got the message that one of these birds was seen at one of the hotspots on the island, it was a question of looking for a free hour or two to post at the location to catch a glimpse of the animal during sunset. With many thanks to Rob (Curacao Backyard Birding) and co-birder Henriette de Vries, the search was a success and I finally got my first glimpse of a Striated Heron.

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Striated Heron on Curacao.

Indeed this bird looks a lot like the very numerous Green Heron with the note that it is more a black-and white version of it. Some rufous colouring on the neck, but otherwise perfect in 50 shades of grey.

This observation only illustrated that even if the fall migration season is officially at its end, the end of November and the month of December can still have some interesting surprises!


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