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Tricolored Heron (Egretta tricolor)

Triclored Heron alarm call - Celestun
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Song description:

The alarm call of the Tricolored Heron is a series of guttural caw syllables given in repeat.  Stiles and Skutch (1989) report other vocalizations including "deep groaning or creeking notes."

Song measures:

Each short syllable has a wideband frequency spectrum from 200 to 3000 Hz with the highest power distributed between 200 and 1600 Hz.  These syllables last 0.52 ± 0.07 seconds and are given at a rate of three every two seconds (N = 12 syllables from one alarm call bout).

Singing behaviour:

Like most herons, the Tricolored Heron is generally silent except when disturbed.  This alarm call was recorded as I approached a heron perched two meters above a roadside stream.  The last five syllables were given as the bird took flight.


I encountered several Tricolored Herons in the brackish marshes around Celestun, often wading in close proximity to Snowy Egret (Egretta thula) flocks.

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All information and photographs copyright Daniel J. Mennill 1999.
No recordings or other information from this site may be used without written permission from me. 
Please email me (dmennill AT uwindsor DOT ca) and I will happily grant permission for any non-commercial or education purposes.