Garça-real © Diogo Oliveira

Grey Heron

Ardea cinerea

The Grey Heron is the larger bird that can occasionally be observed in the Gulbenkian Garden.

With about a meter long and a wingspan greater than a meter and a half, this bird is especially abundant in Portugal during winter. It is an aquatic species, with a plume of gray shades and easily recognized by its long neck.

Its scientific name is quite clear: Ardea is the Latin term for heron; cinerea is Latin for “ashen”, alluding to the predominant color of the species.

Text: João E. Rabaça