|A Great Egret walks down a residential street in Mission Viejo. Photo by Ken Meyer|
Great Egrets are tall, long-legged wading birds. It hunts in classic heron fashion, standing immobile or wading through wetlands to capture a fish with a deadly jab of their yellow bill. In flight, its long neck is tucked in and the legs extend back.
It's hard to believe that Great Egrets, herons and other elegant birds were hunted to near extinction for their plumes to adorn women's hats in the late nineteenth century. Their plight sparked conservation movements and lead to some of the first laws to protect birds.