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Posted March 30, 2017 | 11:48 AM

Wild Wednesday: Snowy Egret

Egretta thula

The snowy egret is a year-round resident of Florida. In the late 1800s, its plumage was coveted for women's hats. Overhunting caused its population to drop to endangered levels. The egret is now protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act because it migrates in some areas. The snowy egret's bright yellow feet seem to help it forage by stirring up small aquatic animals.

In Hillsborough County, snowy egrets are often sighted at E.G. Simmons Park, Upper Tampa Bay Park, Lettuce Lake Park, Lower Green Swamp Nature Preserve, Violet Cury Nature Preserve, and Cockroach Bay Nature Preserve.

Snowy egrets:

  • Get their name from its all white plumage
  • Plumage was worth double the value of gold, ounce for ounce, in 1886
  • Are distinguished from the similar looking juvenile little blue heron by the egrets' black legs and yellow feet

Capture Hillsborough County's natural beauty and share your sightings with us: #WildWednesday