|SOUTHEASTERN CARIBBEAN BIRDS
|Trinidad and Tobago Field Naturalists' Club Southeastern Caribbean Bird Alert Trinidad and Tobago Rare Bird Committee
|TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO|
|RESPONSES TO 'Mystery Egrets' (Egretta sp.)|
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I would go with the hybrid theory on the first dusky bird. Likely Snowy and Little Blue as you say.
I've have pictures in Birding World (2000) of a Little Egret in England that had a similar bicoloured bill to your first Snowy. They queried a hybrid. If that's all that's wrong with it though it may be just a mutation.
My server is down so I only had a brief look at the birds this morning.
... BTW, I have not looked at them closely a second time, but I'd be willing to bet that your egret with the bicolored bill is a Little Blue X (?) Snowy, or that at least one parent is a LBH. [Or as I suppose I should really be saying, 'Little Blue Egret.'] But my original comment still stands, as far as I know: no white Western Reef-egret has ever been proven from the WH. WR-e's muddy and curiously decurved bill really stands out for me.
Twice now I've tried to get to the site and it's down. There was a hybrid Little Blue x Egretta Egret in Delaware this spring for several weeks. I'm curious to see how it compares to your pictures. Plume structure of breeding plumage seemed to rule out all hope for Western Reef-Heron. The Delaware bird had single feathers with white and dark pigments which eliminated grime--the centers of some feathers were dark, other feathers were bicolored in other ways.
RESPONDENT 4: Martin Reid <email@example.com>
When I first looked at the pics, I felt it was a stained bird that was a Little (presumably, due to the plume?). The legs and especially the bill color and shape are not Reef-heron-like at all, to my eye.