We have plenty of cattle egrets (ama-sagi) in our local area, but until this morning I hadn’t seen as many as this in one field. They were all around the tractor as the farmer ploughed his (pretty small) field. I counted around 80 individuals, which is a lot of egrets!
Cattle egrets are, I believe, originally from Africa but they have spread thoughout much of Asia and are even found in Australia and parts of America now. In Japan, they are moving north and have recently reached as far as Hokkaido. They feed on insects, primarily grasshoppers. The white ones are non-breeding and the orange-headed ones are breeding adults.
Order: Ciconiiformes; Family: Ardeidae;
Bubulcus ibis = ama-sagi (Cattle Egret)