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Moorhen Gallinula Chloropus

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Appearance: - The Common Moorhen has a blackish head, neck, and mantle, reddish-brown eyes, a brown back, slate-grey undersides, with white under the tail, yellow legs and feet, and a distinctive red frontal face shield and beak, tipped with yellow. Both sexes look alike.

Size: - Typical Adult is 30-35cm (12-14in).

Food: - Feeding on both water and land, they eat vegetation, seeds, berries, snails, worms, fish, and birds eggs.

Habitat/Range: - Marshland, well vegetated ponds, canals, wetlands and lakes in the UK, Europe, Asia, Africa, and Pacific Islands. Some northern birds winter further south in the Mediterranean in north Africa.

Common Moorhen Map
Breeding Habitat/Resident,    Migration or Winter Area.

Breeding Season: - Starts mid-March to July in Europe, or August in the UK.

Eggs: - 5 to 8 (greyish white to green with reddish-brown markings).

Notes: - The Common Moorhen is a bird in the family Rallidae. It is usually found foraging beside the water amongst the vegetation. The Common Gallinule (Gallinula Galeata) found in the Americas is similar to the Common Moorhen but has recently (2011) been seen as a separate species by the American Ornithologists' Union. The Common Moorhen is sometimes confused with the Coot which is related to the Moorhen although the Coot has a white beak and face-shield while the Moorhen has a red beak and face-shield. Like the Coot, the Moorhen is an aggressive bird and will fight using its feet.

Conservation status (IUCN 3.1):
  Least Concern.  

Classification: - Family: Rallidae,
Genus: Gallinula.

Moorhen video:

Wildfowl (Alphabetical order):
A-B    C-F    G-L    M-R    S-Z   


Common Moorhen (Gallinula Chloropus)