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White-crested Tiger Heron - BirdForum Opus

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Photo by Adam Riley
Mpivie Channel, Loango NP, Gabon, February 2010

Alternative names: White-crested ( Tiger ) Bittern, African Bittern, Tiger Bittern

Tigriornis leucolopha


Large ( 66 - 80 cm. ) Bittern. Forehead and crown crested, black with a white central stripe - not usually noticable unless crest raised. Nape and neck light rufous with bold black barring. Mantle, scapulars and rump rufous with bold black bars. Sides of head and neck as nape. Chin white with fine black vermiculations. Throat and breast with thinner black barring than the sides of the neck. Belly and flanks whiteish with rounded black streaking. Tertials and rest of wing bright rufous with bold black bars. Eye, and eyering yellow. Bill yellow with a dusky distal 33%. Legs yellow. juveniles dark brown with fine white barring on the head and neck. Thin white mardins to sides of neck scapulars ans tertials. Chin, throat and breast pale, washed light brown with broadish streaks on neck and breast that break into "spotty" streaks on the flanks and belly. Bare parts as adult but with c75% of the distal end of the bill black.


Gambia, Senegal, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Côte d'Ivoire, Cameroon, Gabon and the Congo.




Small shaded streams, marshes or swamps, banks of forested rivers, and mangrove swamps. Mainly nocturnal and fairly secretive


The diet includes small fish, crustaceans, crayfish, freshwater crabs, spiders, insects, frogs, snakes and lizards.

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