This tall and elegant bird is actually quite new to NZ; they self-introduced themselves in 1940’s and are now commonly seen in our estuary, McCormacks Bay, Charlesworth Wetland, Linwood Canal, Bexley and even on sport fields and paddocks but only after heavy rain as they prefer to search for their food while wading in shallow water.
They are awesome birds to observe while they stand patiently, without moving as much as a feather, waiting for prey to be within sight to then at lightning speed grab either a small fish, crab, worm, mouse, lizard or frog. Lizards and frogs being more common around the estuary then most people are aware off.
These herons nest near our estuary in the tops of pine and macrocarpa tree and particularly favour South New Brighton Park and the lower Avon River.