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Coots on the Fly

A Small Part of the Flock

The American Coots have been visiting here on our 101 acre community lake for about a month or so now.  I just recently saw them flying and caught the action with my trusty camera.  The American Coot, though looking a lot like a duck, is a member of the Rail bird family.   Coots have huge webbed feet but also have claws.  Coots also have a beak rather than a duck-like bill.  The Coots are black with a white beak.  The Coots also do not quack but rather whistle a thin reedy bird-like softer whistle.  The Coots are great divers.  They primarily eat lake, pond, or river water plants.  This particular group of Coots flew up a ways to avoid an on-coming pontoon boat.  I have enjoyed seeing the Coots here and believe that they will be around a few more weeks before migrating to sunnier and warmer places.  I took these pictures just a few days ago.  Please click on the thumbnail version to see the larger picture.  Enjoy!

Comments on: "Coots on the Fly" (9)

  1. Great pictures, as usual, & what neat informayion about coots! One question: I’m interested in buying a camera, & I wanted to ask you what type you have.
    Thanks, Song of the Wolf

    • Hi Song of the Wolf, Thanks! I use a Nikon D-300S model digital SLR camera. This was an upgrade and gift from my husband (it used to be his). I am pleased with the body. The lenses I happen to use are Sigma brand lenses. My big auto zoom is slightly hard to keep in focus on auto-focus at times (150-500mm) and was repaired once by the company at no charge. Other than that, the shorter lenses are fine on auto. I also have been using manual focus more and more but it is hard when taking pictures of flying birds or birds moving about. Hope all this is helpful!

  2. It’s nice that you get to see them! They left our area and headed south weeks ago. Interesting birds!

    • Hi Montucky, I am really happy that the Coots are still here. They were here last year around this time too. Old timers here say that the Coots stop in every year on their migration. Have a great Weekend!

  3. I didn’t know any of these things about coots, interesting stuff!! They must be sort of like the Platypus of the bird world. Wonder why they call seniors old coots? Remember that saying?

  4. Great pictures of the Coots, Linda. There is so much to see living near the lake, isn’t there?????

    Have a nice weekend. We have been attacking the leaves.

    • Hi Betsy, Yes, living by the shoreline is a real treat! Lots to see and an ever-changing panorama. We are lucky that we have a forest as well as the lake here. Have a great day!

  5. That was very interesting information. I don’t think I have seen a coot before. They sound like very neat birds.

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