Green Heron

The green heron is our smallest true heron. Herons are wading birds that walk through shallow water in
search of small prey. They generally have long legs to move easily through shoreline areas and long necks to give them a good view of their next meal. They are solitary herons and are normally very quiet, especially when they stalk in search of food. They are one of the few birds known to use tools. They actually place bread or insects on the waters surface and catch a small fish which goes for the bait. This is called "baiting."


A small heron (18 inches long) with a wingspan of 26 inches. Green herons have deep green wings with a long beautiful reddish neck, bright yellow eyes and bright orange legs.


Swamps, bayous, rivers, lakes, canals…even golf course ponds!


Most of the United States except for the northern Rocky Mountain States.


Mostly fish, frogs, small snakes, crustaceans and insects.

Life Span: 

8 years or more.

Family Life: 

Green herons build nests on the ground or up to twenty feet in trees. They lay 2 to 4 eggs and incubate them for 17 to 19 days. The chicks fledge or receive their flight feather within three weeks and are ready to leave the nest within about 1 month.


Green heron numbers are stable but their wetland habitats are under constant pressure from human development.