Little Blue Heron – Adults & Juveniles


The Little Blue Heron is the least flashiest of the North American herons with it’s dull slate blue and purplish-red coloring.

Which is the reason the Little Blue Heron was actually spared from the hunting frenzy that decimated other heron and egret populations during the feathered-hat fashion craze of the early twentieth century. Their dark plumes weren’t desired thankfully!


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Little Blue Heron adult


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Little Blue Heron adult


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Little Blue Heron adult feet


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Little Blue Heron adult


The first year of life, the Little Blue Heron is actually white and often confused with the Snowy Egret.


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Little Blue Heron juvenile


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Little Blue Heron juvenile


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Little Blue Heron – almost adulthood!


I lucked out with a juvenile Little Blue Heron foraging around a Snowy Egret.  You can see they are quite similar in size and looks.  The quickest ID difference is the beak (the egret’s black vs. the heron’s slate blue tipped with black) and the heron missing the egret’s yellow lore.


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Snowy Egret (left) and Juvenile Little Blue Heron (right)


Just four frames later an adult Little Blue Heron flew at the juvenile heron above, forcing it into flight.  The adult followed/chased it out of my sight.  Maybe someone was being scolded for wandering off!  😉



Adult Little Blue Heron chasing juvenile Little Blue Heron


The dark Little Blue Heron isn’t the easiest to photograph, hopefully I shared their own shining beauty to you!

(All photos were taken January through March 2020 in Florida)



39 thoughts on “Little Blue Heron – Adults & Juveniles

    • Thank you, Belinda! I’ve always found the adult to be difficult to photograph around home in the mid-Atlantic. But there’s plenty enough of them in Florida that I had many good times trying to get them in a pretty setting and lighting. And still struggled lol. But I did do well to add to my library. 🙂

  1. Lovely shots Donna. I know I have mentioned it before in the resemblance of our White-faced Heron to your Great Blue, but your first two photos exemplified this.

  2. Great series, to make comparisons between the Little Blue Heron and the Snowy Egret. Many people are always in error misidentifying these two species. Your shots are fantastic, Donna. 🙂

  3. The first of juvenile Little blue heron photos woke my imagination as I started to imagine the huge trees and the habitat behind the bird. Love that photo a lot 🙂 It was nice to learn also the differences between White egrets and the juvenile Little blue. Thank you for sharing this information Donna!

  4. Exactly, it was so beautiful dear Donna, Thank you for all details, I am learning from yours. What a beautiful bird they are. Love, nia

  5. What a lovely blue-purple tint. I did notice the Snowy Egret’s yellow and, wow. the juvenile IS really close.

    You should be an Ornithologist. You teach us.

  6. I think these little herons got a bad rap. They’re quite cute. Thanks for the excellent comparison you shared of the juvenile and snowy! A brilliant catch.

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