Bittern

Bittern  (Botaurus ).—The American species makes a rude nest of sticks, reeds, etc., in its marshy haunts, and lays four or five greenish-brown eggs. The bird is sluggish, and its flight is neither swift nor long sustained. When assailed, it fights desperately with bill and claws; and it is dangerous to approach it incautiously when wounded, as it strikes with its long sharp bill, if possible, at the eye. It is common in many parts of North America, migrating according to the season. The crown of the head is reddish brown, and the colors and markings of the plumage differ considerably from those of the common bittern.