Latin name - Ardea cinerea
A very large heron, indeed the largest in Europe, it can grow up to 95 cm long with a wing span of nearly 2 metres and can live up to 25 years. Male and females are alike with long necks and tails, grey upper-parts and white head, neck and under-parts. The young are darker and do not have the long crest plumes of the adults. They can be seen in lakes, reservoirs, marshes, rivers and estuaries. When fishing they often stand motionless, neck stretched out or hunched down with the neck over the chest. Apart from fish it will take amphibians, small mammals, insects and even young birds.