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Juvie Night Heron


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Based on the yellow on the lower mandible, I convinced myself that the bird in these photos I took a couple of days apart last week in Point Lookout NY is a juvenile Black-crowned Night Heron. Now, I'm not so sure. A juvenile BCNH I shot a few years ago in May showed quite a bit more yellow on the lower mandible.

bc_night_heron-22.jpg

bc_night_heron-23.jpg

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MN,   A few years ago, before the big crash of '18 , someone from this site explained to me that the way - that person - decided between juvenile Black-crowned Night-Herons and juvenile Yellow-crowned Night-Herons, was to  look at the white lines at the leading edges of the Primaries.  Both of yours have those white lines, where - that person- implied that juvenile Black-crowned Night-Herons, pretty much do not.  I checked my "guide" book to see what it said, though it was not clear about this. See what other, more experienced people say abut these white lines being - more distinguishing, than I suspect.  Too, another juvenile bird with these white lines at the leading edges of it's Primaries  is a juvenile Green Heron.

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1 hour ago, Charlie Spencer said:

Would you expand on that?  Are the Yellows more upright?

Thanks.

Here is a site that has been a big help to me:

https://www.birdzilla.com/bird-identification/id-skill-development/bird-families/egrets-herons-similar/juvenile-night-heron-comparison.html

Basically, Yellow-crowned are more lanky and gangly looking, both on the ground and in-flight. Black-crowned are more compact and hunched looking. Even went alert, Black-crowned don't look nearly as rangy as yellow crowned.

I find the bill shape and color to be useful, with Black-crowned exhibiting more extensive yellow, especially on the lower mandible, on a sharply pointed bill vs Yellow-crowned having a more blunt bill that is a darker bluish gray at the base.

I'm not sure about the ID point that @joeremembers seeing on the old forum. I'm curious about that, and if that person is still on the forum.

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3 hours ago, Charlie Spencer said:

Would you expand on that?  Are the Yellows more upright?

Thanks.

It's akin to the structural differences between Green Heron and other small herons, say Little Blue. Both are small, but Green Herons are very compact, while Little Blue simply appears as a miniature version of the larger herons, structurally.

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I usually use the beaks, its pretty reliable after they are a few weeks old,there are other marks, also,but I see a lot at the rookery here and have become good at looking at the beaks first.

Yellow Crowned has a blunter beak

28412448377_ff77210b4a_c.jpg

Vs, Black Crowned slicker stiletto one

 

50068129001_fdae7be70d_c.jpg

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5 minutes ago, flightman said:

Thanks to all.

Looking at Sibley again, I see that a BCNH never shows as much neck as seen in my second photo.

Well, not NEVER...

https://www.birdzilla.com/bird-identification/id-skill-development/bird-families/egrets-herons-similar/juvenile-night-heron-comparison.html

Edited by The Bird Nuts
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15 hours ago, joe said:

white lines at the leading edges of the Primaries

It's the leading edges of the greater secondary coverts, and they're absolutely distinctive. From distance, juv YCNHs are gray, juv BCNHs are brown. Juv YCNHs have very dark flight feathers that contrast strongly with the wing coverts of the upper wing; the flight feathers of juv BCNH are brown and contrast poorly.

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