The Black-Headed Heron (Ardea melanocephala) is a long-legged wading bird most common in East Africa.
The Black-Headed Heron has a grey body and grey wings, with a split-level black and white face (black on the top and white underneath) with black at the back of the neck and white at the front of the neck. It has a dark grey beak and grey legs.
It can grow to 83-91 centimetres (33-36 inches) tall.
It lives near water, such as lakes, rivers, ponds, and streams. It feeds mostly on aquatic creatures, such as fish, frogs, eels, and insects, which it catches after standing stationary beside or in the water or stalking its prey.
The Black-Headed Heron lives in colonies, called heronries. They build their nests in tall trees.
The Black-Headed Heron flies with its legs outstretched and its neck retracted into an S-shape. Storks, cranes, and spoonbills fly with their necks outstretched.
Photographer: Martina Nicolls
Martina Nicolls: SIMILAR BUT DIFFERENT IN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM