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Black-headed Heron (Ardea melanocephala), Masai Mara Reserve, Kenya
The Black-headed Heron is common throughout much of sub-Saharan Africa and Madagascar. It is mainly resident but some west African birds move further north in the rainy season.
This species usually breeds in the wet season in colonies in trees, reedbeds or cliffs. It builds a bulky stick nest and lays 2–4 eggs.
It often feeds in shallow water, spearing fish, or frogs with its long, sharp bill. It will also hunt well away from water, taking large insects, small mammals, and birds. It will wait motionless for prey, or slowly stalk its victim.