basic information

Black-crowned Night Heron

Nycticorax nycticorax (Linnaeus, 1758)

Кваква | Бақылдақ құтан

Almaty area. Sorbulak.
© Andrey Kovalenko


Inhabits lakes and reservoirs in southern part of Kazakhstan in north to north-east coast of Caspian Sea, lower reaches of Ural river, Raigorodok village in Trans-Ural area, lower reaches of Turgay river, Kurgaldzhino (not observed recently) and Alakol depression. In 1985 nesting was found in Zaysan depression on Chernyy Irtysh delta. On migration occurs everywhere excluding arid deserts and highlands, but every year recorded in foothills of Western Tien Shan.


Common breeding migrant. Inhabits rivers and lakes with tree and shrub vegetation growing right in the water or on islands; both in plains and foothills. Occasionally nests on waters with only reed-beds. In spring appears in end March – early April, but sometimes only in mid-April. It migrates singly or in small flocks, regularly calling in flight. Migration finishes in early – mid-May. Breeding begins in mid-April – May. Usually nests in colonies often together with Cormorants and Grey Herons, less often in independent groups. Nests are located on bushes and trees (Asiatic Poplar, Willow, Russian Olive, Elm) at 5-10 m above the ground, usually lower than nests of other birds, very rare nests located among the reeds. Both partners build nest from the dry twigs or reed stems, nest cup is baldly lined with dry grass. Clutch of 2-5, more often 4 eggs, is found in end April – mid-June. Incubation lasts 21-22 days. Re-nesting after loss of first clutch observed even in second half of July. Nestlings hatch in early May, both parents feed them. Flying juveniles (at age about one month old) sometimes seen in the end May (on Syrdarya river at Chinaz), but usually in June – July. Dispersal begins in August, the intensive autumn migration is in September, and the last birds recorded in the end of October.


Nycticorax nycticorax nycticorax (Linnaeus, 1758)


Gavrilov E. I., Gavrilov A. E. "The Birds of Kazakhstan". Almaty, 2005. Э.И.Гаврилов. "Фауна и распространение птиц Казахстана". Алматы, 1999. В.К.Рябицев. "Птицы Урала, Приуралья и Западной Сибири". Екатеринбург. Изд-во Уральского университета, 2000.



Nycticorax nycticorax nycticorax
(Linnaeus, 1758)

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