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Posts tagged ‘Moorhens’

Common Moorhen, Purple Gallinule and Common Coot

Purple Gallinule

The Rail family of birds includes moorhens, gallinules and coots.  All are marsh birds that have a chicken-like appearance but act more like wading birds and ducks.  All eat a variety of seeds, and mostly aquatic insects (some land based worms and grubs too).

The Common Moorhen is black for the males and brown for the hens with a red fleshy area over their beak.  The Purple Gallinule is a flashy turquoise with purple accents and the red fleshy area over the beak.  The Common Coot is black with the white fleshy area over the beak.  All behave fairly the same.   Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture.

Common Moorhen

Common Coot

Purple Gallinule

 

 

Pond Wildlife

 

Hooded Mergansers

Wood Stork

Anhinga

 

Big exotic birds and and a tiny Palm Warbler songbird, all were spotted here in The Villages, FL, at several ponds and smaller lakes this past week.  It is always such fun to take the camera and go see what animals and birds can be found on any given day.  I saw these at Paradise Lake, The Freedom Pointe Lake, and the Walmart ponds on CR466 at Buffalo Ridge.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture.  Enjoy!

 

Pied-billed Grebe

Palm Warbler

 

 

Common Moorhens

Egyptian Goose

Great Egret

A Visit at the Sharon Rose Wiechens Preserve

Common Coot

Ring-necked Ducks, a Little Blue Heron, a beautiful Purple Gallinule, a few Common Moorhens, several Pied-billed Grebes, an Anhinga, and a Common Coot were spotted at the lovely gem of a nature preserve, the Sharon Rose Wiechens Nature Preserve here in The Villages, Florida on Friday, Dec. 28, 2018.

I often see the Common Moorhens and in season coots at this preserve.  Less commonly seen are the Ring-Necked Ducks (all hens), the grebes, and the Little Blue Heron.  I also frequently see Osprey in the area as the lake is a medium-sized one with lots of wildlife and fish.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of that particular photo.  Enjoy!

Purple Gallinule

Hen Ring-necked Ducks

Pied-billed Grebe

 

 

Hen Ring-necked Ducks

Anhinga

Little Blue Heron

 

 

 

A Visit to the Sharon Rose Wiechens Nature Preserve

Great Blue Heron

A couple of days ago at dusk, I went to the Sharon Rose Wiechens Nature Preserve here in The Villages, Florida.  It was the first time I have been to the preserve since Hurricane Irma.  Not much has changed except for one large tree being cut down.

While at the preserve I spotted Common Coots, a few Common Moorhens, a few Boat-tailed Grackles,  a few Red-winged Blackbirds, and toward the end of our visit, a pair of Sandhill Cranes, a Great Blue Heron , and a flock of ducks that suddenly appeared way up in the sky flying Northward.  The preserve is a lovely spot and I am glad to have been there again.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture.  Enjoy!

A Common Coot

Boat-tailed Grackles

Male Red-winged Blackbird

 

Sandhill Cranes

A male Common Moorhen

A Flock of Ducks

Common Moorhens and Common Coots

A Pair of Common Moorhens

Both the Common Moorhens and the Common Coots are here in The Villages, FL during the winter months.  We also have moorhens here all year long but do have many more around in the winter.

Common Moorhens show different coloring between the genders while mostly the coots are just a charcoal black.  Moorhen drakes are also charcoal while the hens are a brown color.  Moorhens have a fleshy red growth on their faces and the coots have a white growth.  Both types are members of the Rail family of water birds.  Both look like a cross between a chicken and a duck.  Moorhens and coots live in marshes, lakes, ponds, and slow streams.  The coots and moorhens are good at flight.  The coots form “Rafts” which are huge numbers of birds paddling together on a body of water.  Coots are more flock birds while the Moorhens are often in pairs or small groups.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the photo.  Enjoy!

Common Coot

A Raft of Common Coots

A Drake Common Moorhen

This Common Moorhen, a member of the Rail family of birds and a cousin to its almost look-alike, the Coot, was spotted at the Wal-Mart pond on CR-466, in The Villages, Florida last week.

Common Moorhens live happily in ponds, on the shorelines of lakes, and also in marshes.  Occasionally they are also on rivers.  These duck-like birds eat plants.  They are attractive and harmless. The hens (I did not see any that day) are a brown color but similar in looks to the drakes, which are charcoal dark grey and white with a red patch above their bill or beak.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture.  Enjoy!

A Visit to the Shopping Center Ponds

A Young Alligator

A Young Alligator

Coot

Coot

Little Blue Heron

Little Blue Heron

Alligators, Little Blue Heron, Great Egret, Great Blue Heron, Bufflehead Duck, Mallard Ducks, Common Moorhens, Anhingas, Pied-billed Grebe, and Common Coots all were spotted at two small ponds right next to a small shopping center area near The Villages, Florida on Highway 466.  Yes, right next to the Walmart!  I took these pictures yesterday afternoon (Jan. 14, 2016).  I have taken pictures at these ponds several different times in the last year.  There often is wildlife to be seen there.

I am amazed at how well wildlife copes with all the new development.  I am glad these wetlands, though tiny, were saved!  I spotted three Alligators in the larger of the two ponds by the way and one of those was decent sized!  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger picture.  Enjoy!

Mallard Duck

Drake Mallard Ducks

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron

Pair of Mallard Ducks

Pair of Mallard Ducks

 

Great Egret

Great Egret

 

Pied-billed Grebe

Pied-billed Grebe

Drake (male) Bufflehead Duck

Drake (male) Bufflehead Duck

 

Common Moorhen

Common Moorhen

Alligator

Alligator

Anhinga

Anhinga

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