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Cattle Egret sightings bring small tourism boost to borough


Mandy kivisto / Altered Perceptions Studio

Cattle egrets or "fathers of all ticks" as they known in their home, originating in Africa, came to America in 1953, spreading to California in 1964 and were first recorded in Ketchikan in 1981, and have been sighted very rarely in other parts of Alaska over the years.

Wrangell's unusual end of October avian visitors may have hopped a few islands to the north as winter creeps in, as a pair of Cattle Egrets caused a fair stir in Petersburg last week, enticing several out of town birders to witness the sightings themselves.

The birds, regularly spotted along lawns in town for more than a week, are not a native resident to Alaska, or to the American continents, hailing originally from Africa. They arrived in Florida around 1953, hopping across the continent to California by 1964 and were first seen in southeast Alaskan in 1981, when four birds landed in Ketc...

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