:"This is an article about a type of bird. For the EGRET satellite mission, see Energetic Gamma Ray Experiment Telescope."Taxobox
name = Egret

image_width = 250px
image_caption =
regnum = Animalia
phylum = Chordata
classis = Aves
ordo = Ciconiiformes
familia = Ardeidae
subdivision_ranks = Genera
subdivision = "Egretta"

An egret is any of several herons, most of which are white or buff, and several of which develop fine plumes (usually milky white) during the breeding season. Many egrets are members of the genera "Egretta" or "Ardea" which contain other species named as herons rather than egrets. The distinction between a heron and an egret is rather vague, and depends more on appearance than biology. The word "egret" comes from the French word "aigrette", referring to the long filamentous feathers that seem to cascade down an egret's back during the breeding season.

Several of the egrets have been moved around from one genus to another in recent years: the Great Egret, for example, has been classified as a member of either "Casmerodius", "Egretta" or "Ardea".

In the 19th and early part of the 20th century, some of the world's egret species were endangered by relentless hunting, since hat makers in Europe and the United States demanded massive numbers of egret plumes and breeding birds were killed in locations all around the world.

Several "Egretta" species, including the Eastern Reef Egret, the Reddish Egret and the Western Reef Egret have two distinct colours, one of which is entirely white. Little Blue Heron has all-white juvenile plumage.

pecies in taxonomic order

* Great Egret or Great White Egret, "Ardea alba"
* Intermediate Egret, "Ardea intermedia" or "Egretta intermedia"
* Cattle Egret, "Bubulcus ibis"
* Little Egret "Egretta garzetta"
* Eastern Reef Egret, "Egretta sacra"
* Western Reef Egret, "Egretta gularis"
* Snowy Egret, "Egretta thula"
* Reddish Egret, "Egretta rufescens"
* Slaty Egret, "Egretta vinaceigula"
* Chinese Egret, "Egretta eulophotes"

External links

* [ Great Egret at the USGS]

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Egret — E gret, n. [See {Aigret}, {Heron}.] 1. (Zo[ o]l.) The name of several species of herons which bear plumes on the back. They are generally white. Among the best known species are the American egret ({Ardea egretta} syn. {Herodias egretta}); the… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • egret — [ē′gret΄, ē′grit; eg′rit] n. pl. egrets or egret [ME < OFr aigrette, kind of heron, tuft of feathers < Prov aigreta < aigron < Frank * heigro: see HERON] 1. any of several herons (esp. genus Egretta), usually with long, white plumes 2 …   English World dictionary

  • Egret — C est aujourd hui en Picardie et en Haute Normandie que le nom est le plus répandu, mais il a été porté autrefois dans plusieurs autres régions, notamment dans la Meuse. Tout comme sa probable variante Aigret, il peut avoir plusieurs sens et il… …   Noms de famille

  • egret — mid 14c., from O.Fr. aigrette, from O.Prov. aigreta, dim. of aigron heron, perhaps of Germanic origin (Cf. O.H.G. heigaro; see HERON (Cf. heron)) …   Etymology dictionary

  • egret — ► NOUN ▪ a heron with mainly white plumage, having long plumes in the breeding season. ORIGIN Old French aigrette, from the Germanic base of HERON(Cf. ↑heron) …   English terms dictionary

  • egret — /ee grit, eg rit, ee gret , ee gret/, n. 1. any of several usually white herons that grow long, graceful plumes during the breeding season, as Egretta garzetta (little egret), of the Old World. 2. aigrette. [1400 50; late ME egret(e) < AF egret… …   Universalium

  • egret — /ˈigrət / (say eegruht) noun 1. any of various birds of the genera Egretta and Ardea, family Ardeidae, occurring throughout the world and bearing long plumes in the breeding season, as the widespread intermediate egret, A. intermedia, a large… …  

  • egret — UK [ˈiːɡrət] / US [ˈɪɡrət] noun [countable] Word forms egret : singular egret plural egrets a white bird with long legs that lives near water …   English dictionary

  • egret — baltieji garniai statusas T sritis zoologija | vardynas atitikmenys: lot. Egretta angl. egret rus. цапля, f pranc. aigrette, f ryšiai: platesnis terminas – dieniniai garniai siauresnis terminas – baltaskruostis garnys siauresnis terminas –… …   Paukščių pavadinimų žodynas

  • Egret class sloop — The Egret class sloops were a three ship class of a long range escort vessels used in the Second World War by the Royal Navy. Three ships were built; HMS Auckland , HMS Pelican and HMS Egret . Egret was lost to a guided missile. While patrolling… …   Wikipedia

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