Great Egret in breeding plumage

Great Egret in breeding plumageGreat Egret in breeding plumage – Nikon D200, handheld, f8, 1/1000, ISO 200, Nikkor 80-400mm VR at 400mm, natural light

Great Egrets develop fancy plumes when they are in breeding plumage and seem to be quite famous for that but their lores also change color from yellow to a lime green and the top mandible turning very dark. With the lores being so colorful during courtship the eyes seem to look even paler than normal.

This Great Egret was photographed in Florida during the month of April which seems to be around the peak of their breeding season there.



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About Mia McPherson

I am a nature lover, wildlife watcher and a bird photographer. I first become serious about bird photography when I moved to Florida in 2004 and it wasn’t long before I was hooked (addicted is more like it). My move to the Salt Lake area of Utah was a great opportunity to continue observing their behavior and to pursue my passion for photographing birds.


  1. The lores are brilliant. What a photo Mia!

  2. These colours are quite intense.

  3. great close up, never easy to get it so close, well done mia =))
    have a nice week end ;)

  4. What an amazing photo. The colour on the lores is beautiful – but it is the curves of his neck which keep drawing my eyes. Thank you.

  5. Merrill Ann Gonzales

    I just noticed that the blue-green of the lore seems to extend down in a thin line under the lower mandible. I would never have known that without your photo. I think lime green is a little more yellow than the blue-green of your photo. I know the names on colors are often regional and subjective, but for those who work with color all the time they can be as exact as any art.
    It’s a fabulous photo for sure. In gratitude, Merrill

    • I agree with Merrill Ann Gonzales…rather than “lime green” the bird’s lore appears to be a blue-green or turquoise on my iPad and laptop. I don’t know how accurate this is, but the effect is gorgeous!

  6. Very well done! Thank you. I always learn from your posts.

  7. Magnificent Photo to to start the day with! Wonderful detail and vivid coloring, plus I always learn something from your associated text. thank you ;)

  8. Fantastic, beautiful image…great detail! I especially like the lifted little feather on the top of his head. Is that first bump in his neck his crop?

  9. Absolutely stunning photo! The bright whites of a bird are so hard to photograph without being over blown with too much light. Terrific job, Mia! He’s gorgeous.

  10. That’s beautiful Mia, I would love to get this one.

  11. Striking portrait and colour!

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