[ More Wisconsin Wildlife ]

Great Blue Herons


Great blue herons are a very interesting and peculiar animal. These birds generally tend to be somewhat mean in behavior so enjoy their presence, but keep your distance. They don't like to be bothered. When attempting to catch prey, the great blue heron will use their scissor-like beak to spear the animal. (Mainly fish) The Great Blue Heron when in danger will also use their beak to spear the skull of the predator. This is their main tactic of defense to help them survive. Did you know that the great blue heron has the ability to fly before they even turn 8 weeks old?



Name: Great Blue Heron

Scientific Name: Ardea herodias

Measurements: height: 4ft, weight: 5-8lbs, wingspan: 6ft

Habitat: wetlands, salt and freshwater environments

Diet: fish, reptiles, small mammals, insects, birds, small plants

Behavior: nest in groups so there is always someone watching for predators, make loud squawking noises when preparing to nest, can be very mean if someone disturbs their nest.

Reproduction: 3-5 eggs incubated by both parents, breed from March to May in northern area and from November to April in southern area, 26-30 days in incubation.

Predators: foxes, minks, hawks, raccoons, dogs

Life Expectancy: up to 21 years old in wild.

Extra Facts: nesting communities can have as many as 135 nests, can fly at speeds of 19-29mph, males steal sticks from other nests to impress females.

Part of Wisconsin it generally resides: all throughout Wisconsin.

 [ Birds of Wisconsin ]


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