Great White Egrets in Britain

GW Egret at Shorncote

Currently there appear to be at least 5 of these graceful Egrets present in the Cotswold Water Park, and there may be more. The following article gives details of their recent colonisation of the UK –

Great White Egrets have steadily expanded west across continental Europe in the last couple of decades, and at the same time have become increasingly regular in Britain, initially as wintering birds (which are now widespread across the southern half of the UK) and more recently as breeding birds, the centre of this population being the Somerset Levels (9 pairs at Ham Wall this year, for example). They may well colonize other areas in the next few years, including CWP, and they’re certainly a bird to look out for at the moment – with birds being regular at pits 119/119b, Shorncote area, and Cleveland Lakes / pit 74 – and hopefully this striking large Heron with its snake-like neck will become a regular sight.

Incidentally, with a Cattle Egret being on the Water Park at the moment, along with the resident Little Egret and Grey Herons, and Bitterns also regularly reported, there are currently 5 species of Heron in CWP!

GW Egret at Shorncote

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