Sunday, August 25, 2013

Suburban White-necked heron

Over the last 18 months White-necked heron seem to be popping up more frequently in southern Victoria. I went several years prior to this without seeing one at all.

They are even appearing in in the suburbs. This one was spotted at a man-made chain of ponds fed by freeway run-off alongside Heatherdale Creek in Ringwood (Melbourne, Victoria - see geotag).

White-necked heron Ardea pacifica in non-breeding plumage. There is a little of the plum colouring that would indicate a breeding bird but the absence of colour on the breast and line of spots down the front of the neck tell otherwise.
White-necked heron beside the Eastlink bike trail, Ringwood

A very "suburban" view!

In my earlier years I remember this bird going by the name Pacific heron which somehow seems a better name! Some sightings data ....
2001 and 2004 look to be the best years in recent times for White-necked heron in Victoria (screen grab from data). The data also suggests that the spring months September - November are the most likely.
And a few other birds photographed this day ...

New Holland honeyeater
Eurasian coot
Pacific black duck
Bird on!


  1. I love White-necked Herons and it's interesting to see photos of them in urban settings. Nice work! I also prefer the name Pacific Heron.

  2. a nice variety here Pete and good to see the white-necked up close