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Large white wading bird 80-90 cm long with a wingspan of 120-135 cm. Pure white although may have brown staining on birds with older plumage. In breeding, the adults have a crest at the rear of the head, an ochre breast patch and of course all adults have the characteristic long black bill with the spoon shaped end and a yellow tip to it. Juvs. have a light coloured bill with pinkish legs that turn black as they mature.
These birds in a small breeding colony north of Amsterdam in Holland. Found in dense woodland strip between the road and a large body of water in a suburban area.
This bird has four young that I could see.