White-faced Heron killing Another White-faced Heron

To: "" <>
Subject: White-faced Heron killing Another White-faced Heron
From: Andrew Taylor <>
Date: Sun, 30 Aug 2015 22:42:52 +0000
Yesterday bushwalking near Bobbin Head in Sydney's north we came on an
unusual sight: a White-faced Heron standing on another White-faced Heron
in shallow water.  The second heron was partly submerged and struggling
to escape.  The first Heron jabbed it repeated with its bill drawing
blood and damaging the eye of the first bird and kept forcing it below
the water.

After being forced below the water several times over about 5 minutes
the second heron apparently drowned.  The first heron remained standing
on or near its lifeless body for perhaps a minute then flew 50m across
the estuary, called and started foraging in the shallows.

If I'd realized what was happening immediately I might haved intervened,
although the track was some distance from the water, but I'd have never
seen anything like this behaviour from a heron.  HANZAB mentions nothing
like this. Reports of intraspecies-killing in birds are rare - although
a Welsh swan made the news for it: h


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