Night Heron

Nycticorax nycticorax (Linnaeus, 1758) NT NIGHE 1040
Family: Pelecaniformes > Ardeidae

Night Heron, Philip Croft

With a wide breeding range that extends across much of Eurasia, this is a scarce visitor. While wild birds are typically seen in either April/May or October/November, free-flying birds from collections may also be encountered.

Young Black-crowned Night-Herons often disgorge their stomach contents when disturbed. This habit makes it easy to study their diet.

Select a topic for more facts and statistics about the Night Heron

  • Breeding
  • Winter
Escaped Breeder, Scarce Visitor


5k records observations recorded by BTO surveyors
5k records



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Status and Trends

Population size and trends and patterns of distribution based on BTO surveys and atlases with data collected by BTO volunteers.


This species can be found on the following statutory and conservation listings and schedules.


We have no population estimates for this scarce species.


This scarce visitor is too rarely reported to map distribution.

Occupied 10-km squares in UK

European Distribution Map

European Breeding Bird Atlas 2


This scarce visitor is too rarely reported to map distribution change.


Information about movement and migration based on online bird portals (e.g. BirdTrack), Ringing schemes and tracking studies.


View a summary of recoveries in the Online Ringing Report.

Foreign locations of birds ringed or recovered in Britain & Ireland

Foreign locations of Night Heron ringed or recovered in Britain & Ireland
Encountered in: Winter (Nov-Feb); Spring (Mar-Apr); Summer (May-Jul); Autumn (Aug-Oct)


Lifecycle and body size information about Night Heron, including statistics on nesting, eggs and lifespan based on BTO ringing and nest recording data.


Sample sizes are too small to report Productivity and Nesting statistics for this species.


Sample sizes are too small to report Biometrics for this species.

Feather measurements and photos on featherbase


For information in another language (where available) click on a linked name

Welsh: Crëyr Nos
Catalan: martinet de nit comú
Czech: kvakoš nocní
Danish: Nathejre
Dutch: Kwak
Estonian: ööhaigur
Finnish: yöhaikara
French: Bihoreau gris
German: Nachtreiher
Hungarian: bakcsó
Icelandic: Nátthegri
Irish: Corr Oíche
Italian: Nitticora
Latvian: nakts garnis
Lithuanian: paprastasis naktikovis
Norwegian: Natthegre
Polish: slepowron (zwyczajny)
Portuguese: socó-dorminhoco / goraz
Slovak: chavkoš nocný
Slovenian: kvakac
Spanish: Martinete común
Swedish: natthäger

Links to more information from

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