Family Herons (Ardeidae)

Least Concern

Cocoi Heron (Ardea cocoi)


French: Héron cocoi German: Cocoireiher Spanish: Garza cuca
Other common names: White-necked Heron

Ardea Cocoi


, 1766,



Closely related to A. cinerea and A. herodias. Monotypic.


Most of South America excluding Andes, from E Panama S to Aysén (Chile) and Chubut (Argentina).

Descriptive notes

95–127 cm; 1900–2100 g. Black on head more extensive than on A. cinerea and A. herodias, reaching to below eye, but sometimes with paler... read more


Poorly described, but has characteristic “rraahbm rraabb” call, typical of other large grey herons. read more


Very variable; any kind of wetland, including mangroves, swamps, lake shores, rivers, small streams... read more

Food and feeding

Fish (e.g. Menticirrhus littoralis, Synbranchus marmoratus, Mugil curema), frogs, aquatic insects (both adults... read more


Season: Jul in Surinam, Aug–Nov in SE Brazil and Argentina, Oct in Uruguay, and eggs laid second and third weeks of Aug, colony... read more


Generally sedentary, though birds in extreme S of range probably migrate N during winter and... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Widespread in lowland S America, especially in C & S parts of the continent. In early 1970s breeding population of Surinam... read more

Recommended citation

Martínez-Vilalta, A., Motis, A. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Cocoi Heron (Ardea cocoi). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 29 February 2020).