Reddish Egret (Egretta rufescens) in Merritt Island
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The Reddish Egret (Egretta rufescens) is considered one of the most active herons, and is often seen on the move. It stalks its prey visually in shallow water far more actively than other herons and egrets, frequently running energetically and using the shadow of its wings to reduce glare on the water once it is in position to spear a fish; the result is a fascinating dance. Due to its bold, rapacious yet graceful feeding behavior, author Pete Dunne nicknamed the Reddish Egret "the Tyrannosaurus Rex of the Flats". It eats fish, frogs, crustaceans, and insects. The bird's usual cry is a low, guttural croak.