Black-Crowned Night Herons are the official bird of Oakland thanks to the advocacy of the members of a third-grade class, one of whom famously declared the heron "a cool and funky bird, just like Oakland."
In How to Do Nothing, Jenny Odell describes them:
If you've never seen one, night herons are stocky compared with other herons. My boyfriend once described them as a cross between a penguin and Paul Giamatti. They have a grumpy stoicism about them, sitting hunched over with their long neck completely hidden away.
Oakland's Night Herons in the news
- Oakland Magazine, The Great Heron Project
- SF Gate, Night Herons Settling Down in Downtown Oakland
- Hoodline, Oakland's Black-Crowned Night Herons just about at their Peak, says Wildlife Expert
- San Francisco Chronicle, Oakland's Black-Crowned Night Herons backed by Audubon