Nyctanassa violacea Photo Fiona Sunquist ©
The yellow-crowned night heron is a medium-sized mostly gray heron with a pale yellow crown, a black face with a distinctive white cheek patch, a short, thick, black bill and yellow legs. Breeding birds have long white plumes at the back of the head.
Yellow-crowned night herons are found in hardwood swamps, mangroves, and coastal wetlands. They are year-round Florida residents, more common along the wetlands of the Gulf coast than elsewhere in the state. Though they are called night herons these birds may also be active during the day. They are ambush hunters, and use their powerful beaks to kill and eat crabs as well as other crustaceans, mollusks, aquatic insects and fish.
They often roost during the day in trees in swamps and wetlands.
top of page | back to birds