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Yellow Bittern

The Yellow Bittern (Ixobrychus sinensis), is a small bittern. It is from the Old World, breeding in tropical Asia from India and Sri Lanka east to Japan and Indonesia. It is mainly resident, but some northern birds migrate short distances. Their breeding habitat is reed beds.

This is a small species at 15 inches in length, with a short neck and longish bill. The male is uniformly dull yellow above and buff below. The head and neck are chestnut, with a black crown. The female’s crown, neck and breast are streaked brown, and the juvenile is like the female but heavily streaked brown below, and mottled with buff above.

They nest on platforms of reeds in shrubs. 4-6 eggs are laid. They can be difficult to see, given their skulking lifestyle and reed bed habitat, but tend to fly fairly frequently, when the striking contrast between the black flight feathers and the otherwise yellowish plumage makes them unmistakable.

Yellow Bitterns feed on insects, fish and amphibians.

Photo By J.M.Garg

Yellow Bittern


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