I love Reddish Egrets because they are easy to identify by their behavior — when I see them, they are either standing around trying to look like a stump, or dancing frantically as they chase a meal.
Reddish Egrets are part of the family Ardididae, large wading birds. The Sibley Guide to Bird Life and Behavior points out:
“Ardeids have a diverse repertoire of foraging behaviors; researchers have described more than 30… Typical herons often try to flush prey from hiding places by wing-flicking, foot-stirring, raking, and paddling. (p. 172)
The Reddish Egret has the most active foraging techniques of any ardied, literally chasing small fish through shallow water. The abrupt, animated actions of a foraging bird — running, flapping, stretching, crouching, spinning — can be comical to watch.” (p. 173)
Unlike Little Blue Herons, who are light when young and blue when adult, Reddish Egrets keep their coloration their whole life.
Here where I live, about 100 miles from the Gulf Coast, common visitors are Great Blue Herons, Great Egrets, and Little Blue Herons; occasionally we have visits from Green Herons and Tri-colored Herons. But we have to drive all the way to the coast to be entertained by Reddish Egrets. 🙂