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Merlin Bird ID

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    American Bittern Identification

    The Four Keys to ID

    • Size & Shape

      American Bitterns are medium-sized herons with thick, compact bodies. They have shorter legs and thicker necks than typical herons and a slightly hunched posture. The daggerlike bill is long, straight, and sharply pointed. The wings are broad but the wingtips are somewhat pointed.

      Relative Size

      Larger than a Green Heron; Smaller than a Great Blue Heron.

      Relative Sizebetween crow and goosebetween crow and goose
      • Both Sexes
        • Length: 23.6-33.5 in (60-85 cm)
        • Weight: 13.1-17.6 oz (370-500 g)
        • Wingspan: 36.2 in (92 cm)