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Diet of the White-faced Heron on Manawatu pastures

  • Publication Type

    Journal Article

  • Publication Year


  • Author(s)

    P.L. Lo

  • Journal Name


  • Volume, Issue

    38, 1

  • Pagination


  • Article Type



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Diet of the White-faced Heron on Manawatu pastures

Notornis, 38 (1), 63-71

P.L. Lo (1991)

Article Type: paper



White-faced Herons (Egretta novaehollandiae novaehollandiae) captured a wide variety of prey from pastures with transitory surface water. A total of 357 prey items were recorded, mainly from regurgitated pellets but also from observations of birds feeding. Major prey groups were insects, tadpole shrimps, earthworms, tadpoles and frogs. The diet depended on the seasonal availability of prey. In spring, earthworms, cosmopolitan diving beetles, tadpole shrimps, tadpoles and frogs were major prey. During the drier conditions of summer and autumn, terrestrial insects such as flies, damselflies, and grasshoppers became important. Earthworms and tadpole shrimps were the main prey in winter.