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Little Bittern

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'''Middle East''': [[Turkey]], [[Cyprus]], [[Syria]], [[Lebanon]], [[Israel]], [[Jordan]], [[Saudi Arabia]], [[Yemen]], [[Oman]], [[United Arab Emirates]], [[Qatar]], [[Bahrain]], [[Kuwait]], [[Iraq]], [[Iran]], [[Armenia]], [[Azerbaijan]], [[Georgia]]<br /> '''Middle East''': [[Turkey]], [[Cyprus]], [[Syria]], [[Lebanon]], [[Israel]], [[Jordan]], [[Saudi Arabia]], [[Yemen]], [[Oman]], [[United Arab Emirates]], [[Qatar]], [[Bahrain]], [[Kuwait]], [[Iraq]], [[Iran]], [[Armenia]], [[Azerbaijan]], [[Georgia]]<br />
'''Asia''': [[Russia]], [[Siberia]], [[Kazakhstan]], [[Uzbekistan]], [[Turkmenistan]], [[Afghanistan]], [[Mongolia]], [[China]], [[Nepal]], [[Pakistan]], [[India]], Eastern and Western [[Himalayas]]<br /> '''Asia''': [[Russia]], [[Siberia]], [[Kazakhstan]], [[Uzbekistan]], [[Turkmenistan]], [[Afghanistan]], [[Mongolia]], [[China]], [[Nepal]], [[Pakistan]], [[India]], Eastern and Western [[Himalayas]]<br />
-'''Australasia''': [[Papua New Guinea]], [[New Guinea]], [[Australia]], [[New South Wales]], [[Queensland]], [[South Australia]], [[Victoria]], [[Western Australia]], [[New Zealand]], [[New Caledonia]]+'''Australasia''': [[Papua New Guinea]], [[New Guinea]], [[Australia]], [[New South Wales]], [[Queensland]], [[South Australia]], [[Victoria]], [[Western Australia]], [[New Zealand]], [[New Caledonia]] <br />
'''The [[Caribbean]]''': vagrant to [[Barbados]]. '''The [[Caribbean]]''': vagrant to [[Barbados]].
==Taxonomy== ==Taxonomy==

Revision as of 02:19, 28 July 2010

Ixobrychus minutus

Includes: Australian Bittern



27-36 cm in length, 40-58 cm wingspan and 60-150 g weight.
Buff underparts, black back and crown, wings are black with a large white patch on each wing.
The female has a browner back and a buff-brown wing patch.


FemalePhoto by john-henryLesvos, Greece, May 2004
Photo by john-henry
Lesvos, Greece, May 2004

Africa, central and southern Europe, western and southern Asia, and Australasia.
Europe: Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Faroe Islands, The Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, France, Portugal, Madeira, Spain, Ibiza, Mallorca, Canary Islands, Monaco, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Germany, Austria, Italy, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Belarus, Poland, Czechoslovakia, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia, Croatia, Yugoslavia, Montenegro, Serbia, Albania, Macedonia, Greece, Crete, Corfu, Malta, Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine
Northern Africa: Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, Egypt
Western Africa: Mauritania, Senegal, The Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Mali, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Togo, Nigeria, Niger, Chad, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Angola

Subspecies dubiusPhoto by Tom TarrantBrisbane, Australia
Subspecies dubius
Photo by Tom Tarrant
Brisbane, Australia

Eastern Africa: Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Djibouti, Somalia, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Tanzania, Zanzibar, Zambia, Mozambique, Malawi
Southern Africa: Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, South Africa, KwaZulu-Natal, Lesotho, Swaziland
African Islands: Cape Verde, Gulf of Guinea Islands, Sao Tome, Principe, Madagascar
Middle East: Turkey, Cyprus, Syria, Lebanon, Israel, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait, Iraq, Iran, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia
Asia: Russia, Siberia, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Mongolia, China, Nepal, Pakistan, India, Eastern and Western Himalayas
Australasia: Papua New Guinea, New Guinea, Australia, New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Victoria, Western Australia, New Zealand, New Caledonia
The Caribbean: vagrant to Barbados.


Photo by BonnánAyia Reservoir, Crete, October 2008
Photo by Bonnán
Ayia Reservoir, Crete, October 2008

There are four subspecies


  • I. m. minutus:
  • I. m. payesii:
  • I. m. podiceps:
  • I. m. dubius:

Some authorities have considered the Australian Little Bittern a subspecies of Black-backed Bittern, but it is currently considered a subspecies of Little Bittern by most authorities.





It nests on platforms of reeds in shrubs, and 4-8 eggs are laid.


Diet includes insects, fish and amphibians.


Listen in an external program


  1. Clements, JF. 2008. The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World. 6th ed., with updates to December 2008. Ithaca: Cornell Univ. Press. ISBN 978-0801445019.
  2. Avibase

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