Australasian bittern seen on the Temuka River, near Wallingford Road. Bird flushed from vegetation, it flew up over me and up stream where it landed. Approx 10 minutes later it flew back over me down stream to its original spot.
Photo taken on phone - poor quality image.
The herons are long-legged freshwater and coastal birds in the family Ardeidae, with 64 recognised species (some are called "egrets" or "bitterns" instead of "heron"). Within Ardeidae, all members of the genera Botaurus and Ixobrychus are referred to as "bitterns", and — including the Zigzag Heron or Zigzag Bittern — are a monophyletic group within the Ardeidae. However, egrets are not a biologically distinct group from the herons, and tend to be named differently because they...