[CT Birds] Great Egret big gulp
ghanisek at rep-am.com
Mon Aug 10 17:36:56 EDT 2009
Today on the flats behind the Stratford warehouses Bill Banks and I observed a Great Egret eating (or at least trying to eat) an adult Virginia Rail. The egret was struggling with quite a moutful, and the rail was really battered. It looked so bad that at first I thought the egret pick the bird up dead. But I don't think herons and egrets do that. Birds of N. A. Online makes no mention of carrion feeding. After watching the egret struggle for anotrher 10 minutes, I came to the conclusion that it probably caught the rail alive, and the rail got mangled in the process. When we left, the egret was still trying to swallow it. No doubt the rail was way at the top end in prey size.
8/10 Stratford, Short Beach - one WHITE-RUMPED SANDPIPER, c 400 Sanderlings and a smattering of common shorebird migrants; c 250 Common Terns
Milford, Milford Point - one WHIMBREL, one WHITE-RUMPED SANDPIPER, c 2,000 Semipalmated Sandpipers, 100+ Sanderlings, 100+ Semipalmated Plovers, 20 Black-bellied Plovers, 10 Short-billed Dowitchers.
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