Nankeen night heron

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Nankeen night heron
Nankeen Night Herons.jpg
Nankeen night heron visiting Melbourne Zoo
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Pelecaniformes
Family: Ardeidae
Genus: Nycticorax
Species: N. caledonicus
Binomial name
Nycticorax caledonicus
Gmelin, 1789
Subspecies
  • N. c. caledonicus (Gmelin, 1789)
    New Caledonian nankeen night heron
  • N. c. manillensis Vigors, 1831
    Celebes sea nankeen night seron
  • N. c. crassirostris Vigors, 1839
    Bonin nankeen night heron (extinct)
  • N. c. mandibularis Ogilvie-Grant, 1888
    Solomon nankeen night heron
  • N. c. hilli Mathews, 1912
    Common nankeen night heron
  • N. c. pelewensis Mathews, 1926
    Micronesian nankeen night heron
Synonyms
  • Ardea caledonica
    Gmelin, 1789

The nankeen night heron (Nycticorax caledonicus) also commonly referred to as the rufous night heron, and in Melanesia as Melabaob, is a medium-sized heron. It is found in Indonesia, the Philippines, Papua New Guinea, Melanesia, and throughout much of Australia except the arid inland. A small colony has also established near Wanganui, New Zealand

Description[edit]

The nankeen night heron stands about 60cm tall with a stooped appearance. It is not strictly nocturnal. It often feeds during the day, especially during wet weather. The bird is dependent on a diet of small fish, reptiles, insects and sometimes eggs. It can be seen around freshwater rivers, lakes, bulrushes, estuaries, harbors and in residential fishponds for goldfish.

Behaviour[edit]

Breeding[edit]

The species breeds in the period from September to April, building a nest platform out of sticks. It nests communally, near water. Two to five light green eggs are laid, with a 22-day incubation followed by a 42–49 day fledging period.

Widespread throughout its large range, the nankeen night heron is evaluated as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.

Various views and plumages[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]