Eurasian coot

The Eurasian coot (Fulica atra), also known as the common coot,[3][4][5] is a member of the rail and crake bird family, the Rallidae. It is found in Europe, Asia, Australia and parts of Africa.

Eurasian coot
Fulica atra, Blässhuhn am Adenauer-Weiher
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Gruiformes
Family: Rallidae
Genus: Fulica
F. atra
Binomial name
Fulica atra
Fulica atra distribution
Range of F. atra      Breeding range     Year-round range     Wintering range
  • Fulica aterrima Linnaeus, 1766
  • Fulica prior De Vis, 1888[2]

Taxonomy and systematics

The scientific name is from Latin; Fulica is "coot", and atra is "black".[6] There are two subspecies, only one of which is extant: the Australian coot (F. atra australis) which can be found in Australia, New Guinea and New Zealand;[7] and F. atra pontica, which has been described from the Chalcolithic (around 4800-4400 BP) from the Bulgarian Black Sea Coast.[8]


The Eurasian coot is 32–42 cm (13–17 in) long and weighs 585–1,100 g (1.290–2.425 lb),[9] and is largely black except for the white frontal shield (which gave rise to the phrase "as bald as a coot", in use as early as 1430).[10] As a swimming species, the coot has partial webbing on its long strong toes.

The juvenile is paler than the adult, has a whitish breast, and lacks the facial shield; the adult black plumage develops when about 3–4 months old, but the white shield is only fully developed at about one year old.

This is a noisy bird with a wide repertoire of crackling, explosive, or trumpeting calls, often given at night.

Distribution and habitat

Eurasian Coot with Chick

The coot breeds across much of the Old World on freshwater lakes and ponds. It occurs and breeds in Europe, Asia, Australia, and Africa. The species has recently expanded its range into New Zealand. It is resident in the milder parts of its range, but migrates further south and west from much of Asia in winter as the waters freeze.

Behaviour and ecology

Fulica atra 130

The Eurasian coot is much less secretive than most of the rail family, and can be seen swimming on open water or walking across waterside grasslands. It is an aggressive species, and strongly territorial during the breeding season, and both parents are involved in territorial defence.[11] During the non-breeding season they may form large flocks, possibly related to predator avoidance.[12]

It is reluctant to fly and when taking off runs across the water surface with much splashing. It does the same, but without actually flying, when travelling a short distance at speed in territorial disputes. As with many rails, its weak flight does not inspire confidence, but on migration, usually at night, it can cover surprisingly large distances. It bobs its head as it swims, and makes short dives from a little jump.


Fulica atra MWNH 0102
Eggs, Collection Museum Wiesbaden, Germany

This species builds a nest of dead reeds or grasses, but also pieces of paper or plastic near the water's edge or on underwater obstacles protruding from the water, laying up to 10 eggs, sometimes 2 or 3 times per season. Usually only a few young survive. They are frequent prey for birds such as herons and gulls.

Chick mortality occurs mainly due to starvation rather than predation. Most chicks died in the first 10 days after hatching, when they are most dependent on adults for food.[13] Coots can be very brutal to their own young under pressure such as the lack of food. They will bite young that are begging for food and repeatedly do this until it stops begging and starves to death. If the begging continues, they may bite so hard that the chick is killed.[14] Coots will also lay their eggs in the nests of other coots when their environment or physical condition limits their ability to breed, or to lengthen their reproductive life.[13]


The coot is an omnivore, and will take a variety of small live prey including the eggs of other water birds, as well as algae, vegetation, seeds and fruit.[15] It shows considerable variation in its feeding techniques, grazing on land or in the water. In the water it may upend in the fashion of a mallard or dive in search of food.[16]


The Eurasian coot is one of the species to which the Agreement on the Conservation of African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbirds (AEWA) applies.


  1. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Fulica atra". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013.
  2. ^ Condon, H.T. (1975). Checklist of the Birds of Australia: Non-Passerines. Melbourne: Royal Australasian Ornithologists Union. p. 57.
  3. ^ "Feet of the Common Coot". Bird Ecology Study Group. July 11, 2008. Retrieved December 19, 2017.
  4. ^ "Common Coot". Retrieved December 19, 2017.
  5. ^ "Common Coot (Fulica atra) movements" (PDF). Retrieved December 19, 2017.
  6. ^ Jobling, James A (2010). The Helm Dictionary of Scientific Bird Names. London: Christopher Helm. pp. 58, 165. ISBN 978-1-4081-2501-4.
  7. ^ "Australian coot | New Zealand Birds Online". New Zealand Birds Online.
  8. ^ Boev, Z.; Karaivanova, E. (1998). "Fulica atra pontica subsp. n. from the Middle Holocene on the South Black Sea Coast, Bulgaria". Historia naturalis bulgarica. 9: 53–69.
  9. ^ Dunning, John B. Jr., ed. (1992). CRC Handbook of Avian Body Masses. CRC Press. ISBN 978-0-8493-4258-5.
  10. ^ "Coot". Oxford English Dictionary (3rd ed.). Oxford University Press. September 2005. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  11. ^ Cavé, A.J.; Visser, J.; Perdeck, A.C. (1989). "Size and quality of the Coot (Fulica atra) territory in relation to age of its tenants and neighbours" (PDF). Ardea. 77: 87–97.
  12. ^ van den Hout, P.J. (2006). "Dense foraging flotillas of Eurasian coots Fulica atra explained by predation by Ganges soft-shell turtle Aspideretus gangeticus?" (PDF). Ardea. 94 (2): 271–274.
  13. ^ a b "This Coot has a Secret! - NatureOutside". 20 June 2015.
  14. ^ Attenborough, David (16 December 1998). "The Problems of Parenthood". The Life of Birds. Episode 9. 12 minutes in. BBC One.
  15. ^ Martin R., Perrow; Schutten, J. Hans; Howes, John R.; Holzer, Tim; Madgwick, F. Jane; Jowitt, Adrian J.D. (1997). "Interactions between coot (Fulica atra) and submerged macrophytes: the role of birds in the restoration process". Hydrobiologia. 342/343: 241–255. doi:10.1023/A:1017007911190.
  16. ^ Bakker, Brigitte J.; Fordham, Robin A. (1993). "Diving behaviour of the Australian coot in a New Zealand lake" (PDF). Notornis. 40 (2): 131–136.

External links

Abiko, Chiba

Abiko (我孫子市, Abiko-shi) is a city located in Chiba Prefecture, Japan.

As of April 2012, the city has an estimated population of 132,999, and a population density of 3080 persons per km2. The total area is 43.19 km2.

Albanian Ohrid Lake Coast

The Albanian Ohrid Lake Coast (Albanian pronunciation: [brɛˈɡdɛ:ti ohˈrit] — Albanian: Bregdeti Ohrit) is a coastline of the Western Ohrid Lake, that encompasses the southeastern border of the Republic of Albania, stretching from the north of the Bay of Lin nearby the northern border shared with the Republic of Macedonia, across the villages of Memëlisht, Buqezë, Piskupat and the city of Pogradec, to the southern border shared with Macedonia as well.

Albania is located in Southern and Southeastern Europe in the western section of the Balkan Peninsula. It borders on Montenegro to the northwest, Kosovo to the northeast, Macedonia to the east, Greece to the south and the Mediterranean Sea to the west. The coastline along the lake has a total length of 32 kilometres (20 mi) and specifically marked by a mountainous landscape supplied with small bays, sandy coasts and a unique marine life.

The Ohrid Lake is a deep, oligotrophic lake of tectonic origin in Southeastern Europe shared between Albania and the Republic of Macedonia. Approximately two thirds of the lake surface area belong to Macedonia and the remaining third to Albania. It is one of the most ancient lakes in the entire world and the largest in the Balkan Peninsula. Despite the long and continuous history as well as the geographical isolation, it is the lake with the highest biodiversity in the world.The Ohrid-Prespa Transboundary Reserve is included in the World Network of Biosphere Reserves under the UNESCO Man and Biosphere Programme. Most of the country's section of the lake is protected and designated as a protected landscape established on 18 February 1999. The Natural and Cultural Heritage of the Ohrid Region is further included on the tentative list of Albania for designation as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.The region provides habitat for numerous threatened and endangered mammals, with at least twenty one native species recorded in the region. This group includes the wolf, wildcat, otter, brown bear, and chamois. Classified as an Important Bird Area, it contains a wide range of bird habitats associated to topography and the types of vegetation communities of the region. There are at least 137 bird species known to occur in the region with the most important species being the great white pelican, peregrine falcon, and eurasian coot.

Common moorhen

The common moorhen (Gallinula chloropus) (also known as the waterhen, the swamp chicken, and as the common gallinule is a bird species in the family Rallidae. It is distributed across many parts of the Old World.The common moorhen lives around well-vegetated marshes, ponds, canals and other wetlands. The species is not found in the polar regions or many tropical rainforests. Elsewhere it is likely the most common rail species, except for the Eurasian coot in some regions.

The closely related common gallinule of the New World has been recognized as a separate species by most authorities, starting with the American Ornithologists' Union and the International Ornithological Committee in 2011.


Coots are rather small water birds that are members of the rail family, Rallidae. They constitute the genus Fulica, the name being the Latin for "coot". Coots have predominantly black plumage, and—unlike many rails—they are usually easy to see, often swimming in open water. They are close relatives of the moorhen.

Croydon Hills, Victoria

Croydon Hills is a suburb of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 31 km north-east of Melbourne's Central Business District. Its local government area is the City of Maroondah. At the 2011 Census, Croydon Hills had a population of 5,185.

Croydon Hills is bounded by Plymouth Road to the south, Yarra Road to the east and Bemboka Road to the west. The suburb is located in the outer east of Melbourne.

Approximately 5,600 people live in Croydon Hills, with the majority of household incomes between the $50k-80k and $80k-$100k mark.

The suburb was formerly mixed used farmland and orchards. It was developed into spacious suburban housing during the 1980s. The architectural style is typically single storey, brick veneer, with large allotments affording both front and rear gardens, as well as off-street parking for several vehicles.

Croydon Hills has many parks, with walking tracks and native bushlands, such as Settlers Orchard, Yarrunga Reserve, Candlebark Walk and Narr-Maen Reserve. Native birds such as the kookaburra, magpie, galah, sulphur crested cockatoo, magpie-lark, purple swamphen, Eurasian coot, Pacific black duck and Australian wood duck are a common sight in both the parklands and backyard gardens. The common brushtail possum inhabits the area.

Croydon Hills has several churches located in the suburb as well.

The nearest shopping areas are McAdam Square and Burnt Bridge.

The Yarrunga Community Centre is at 76-86 Croydon Hills Drive, in Yarrunga Reserve, adjacent to Croydon Hills Primary School.

Dusky moorhen

The dusky moorhen (Gallinula tenebrosa) is a bird species in the rail family and is one of the eight extant species in the moorhen genus. It occurs in India, Australia, New Guinea, Borneo and Indonesia. It is often confused with the purple swamphen and the Eurasian coot due to similar appearance and overlapping distributions. They often live alongside birds in the same genus, such as the Tasmanian nativehen and the common moorhen.

Knob-billed duck

The knob-billed duck (Sarkidiornis melanotos), or African comb duck, is a duck found in tropical wetlands in Sub-Saharan Africa, Madagascar and south Asia from Pakistan to Laos and extreme southern China.

Most taxonomic authorities split this species and the comb duck from each other. The supposed extinct "Mauritian comb duck" is based on misidentified remains of the Mauritian shelduck (Alopochen mauritianus); this was realized as early as 1897, but the mistaken identity can still occasionally be found in recent sources.

Lake Karamık

Lake Karamık is a lake in Turkey.

It is situated to the south of Çay ilçe (district) of Konya Province at 38°25′N 30°50′E. It is a very shallow lake and in some sources it is called a "marsh".

Its elevation with respect to sea level is about 1,000 metres (3,300 ft). It feeds Lake Eğirdir a bigger lake to the south by means of an underground creek. The total area of the marsh area is about 40 square kilometres (15 sq mi).

Lankaran Lowland

The Lankaran Lowland (Azerbaijani: Lənkəran ovalığı) is a narrow strip of lowland in southern Azerbaijan by the Caspian Sea. It is the southward extension of the Kura-Aras Lowland which in itself is an extension of the Aral–Caspian Depression. It is named after the city of Lənkəran.

Lilla Värtan

Lilla Värtan (Swedish: Smaller Värtan) or simply Värtan is a strait in Stockholm, Sweden. Separating mainland Stockholm from the island and municipality Lidingö, it stretches from Blockhusudden in the south to Stora Värtan in the north, and is joined by the Stocksundet mid-way. Two bridges, collectively called Lidingöbron ("Lidingö Bridge") stretch over the strait.

While most of the coasts surrounding the strait are occupied by industries and the ferry terminals and oil tanks in the harbour area of Värtahamnen, natural beaches are found in both the southern and the northern end of the strait and the strait forms part of the Royal National City Park.Most common fish species are Baltic herring, sea trout, and salmon. Stationary predator fishes, e.g. northern pike and perch, are exposed to raised levels of mercury.The area is considered an important wintering location for several birds species, including swans, Eurasian coot, common pochard, tufted duck, black-headed gull, lesser black-backed gull, gadwall, and common tern. The strait constitutes an important locale, especially ice-free winters, besides the lake Isbladskärret on Djurgården.Vegetation on the shore lines of Lilla Värtan includes alder, purple loosestrife, common valerian, yellow loosestrife, reed canary-grass, tall fescue, lesser periwinkle, and giant knotweed.Levels of heavy metals and organic waste are high in the bottom silt and nutrient levels high in the water. The level of phosphorus was 29 µg/l in 2005.

List of birds of Islamabad

This is a list of birds found in Islamabad, Pakistan. Seventy-two species of birds have been found in this area. The best places to watch are Margalla Hills and Rawal Lake.

Little grebe, Tachybaptus ruficollis

Little cormorant, Microcarbo niger

Great cormorant, Phalacrocorax carbo

Black-crowned night heron, Nycticorax nycticorax

Indian pond heron (Paddybird), Ardeola grayii

Cattle egret, Bubulcus ibis

Little egret, Egretta garzetta

Intermediate egret, Egretta intermedia

Grey heron, Ardea cinerea

Purple heron, Ardea purpurea

Common teal, Anas crecca

Black kite, Milvus migrans

Shikra, Accipiter badius

Long-legged buzzard, Buteo rufinus

Eurasian kestrel, Falco tinnunculus

Grey francolin, Francolinus pondicerianus

Common quail, Coturnix coturnix

Brown waterhen, Amaurornis akool

White-breasted waterhen, Amaurornis phoenicurus

Moorhen, Gallinula chloropus

Eurasian coot, Fulica atra

Red-wattled lapwing, Hoplopterus indicus

Common sandpiper, Actitis hypoleucos

Black-headed gull, Larus ridibundus

Feral pigeon, Columba livia

Wood pigeon, Columba palumbus

Collared dove, Streptopelia decaocto

Palm dove, Spilopelia senegalensis

Spotted dove, Spilopelia chinensis

Rose-ringed parakeet, Psittacula krameri

Common koel, Eudynamys scolopacea

Greater coucal, Centropus sinensis

House swift, Apus affinis

White-throated kingfisher, Halcyon smyrnensis

Pied kingfisher, Ceryle rudis

Hoopoe, Upupa epops

Lesser golden-backed woodpecker, Dinopium benghalense

Brown-fronted woodpecker, Dendrocopos auriceps

Crested lark, Galerida cristata

Small skylark, Alauda gulgula

Brown-throated sand martin, Riparia paludicola

Pale sand martin, Riparia diluta

Barn swallow, Hirundo rustica

Red-rumped swallow, Hirundo daurica

Paddyfield pipit, Anthus rufulus

Grey wagtail, Motacilla cinerea

White wagtail, Motacilla alba

Large pied wagtail, Motacilla maderaspatensis

Himalayan bulbul, Pycnonotus leucogenys

Red-vented bulbul, Pycnonotus cafer

Dark-grey bushchat, Saxicola ferrea

Blue rock thrush, Monticola solitarius

Blue whistling thrush, Myophonus caeruleus

Fan-tailed warbler, Cisticola juncidis

Tawny prinia, Prinia inornata

Yellow-bellied prinia, Prinia flaviventris

Hume's leaf warbler, Phylloscopus humei

White-throated fantail, Rhipidura albicollis

Black-chinned babbler, Stachyris pyrrhops

Common babbler, Turdoides caudatus

Jungle babbler, Turdoides striatus

Great tit, Parus major

Bar-tailed treecreeper, Certhia himalayana

Oriental white-eye, Zosterops palpebrosus

Rufous-backed shrike, Lanius schach

Black drongo, Dicrurus macrocercus

House crow, Corvus splendens

Brahminy starling, Sturnus pagodarum

Common myna, Acridotheres tristis

Bank myna, Acridotheres ginginianus

House sparrow, Passer domesticus

Alexandrine parakeet, Psittacula eupatria

Green bee-eater, Merops orientalis

Rufous treepie, Dendrocitta vagabunda

Indian robin, Saxicoloides fulicatus

List of birds of North America (Gruiformes)

The birds listed below all belong to the biological order Gruiformes, and are native to North America.

Lower Dniester National Nature Park

Lower Dniester National Nature Park (Ukrainian: Нижньодністровський національний природний парк) covers a large portion of the Dniester River Estuary where it enters the Black Sea in southwestern Ukraine. The floodplains and waterways are important to nesting and wintering waterfowl. They are also important for spawning fish: over 70 species of fish in 20 groups are recorded in the park. The boundaries include two RAMSAR wetland sites of international importance. The park is about 30 km west of the city of Odessa, in the administrative districts of Bilhorod-Dnistrovskyi, Bilyayivka, and Ovidiopol in Odessa Oblast.


Nagdaha is a lake in the Dhapakhel Village Development Committee (VDC) of Lalitpur District, in the Kathmandu Valley, Nepal.Like many other water bodies and physical features of Kathmandu, the Nagdaha is also steeped in legends. According to one, a male serpent resides in Taudaha and the resident serpent of Nagdaha is female. During the rainy season the male serpent, widely spoken of in ancient scriptures and oral history of Kathmandu as a serpent king, makes a journey to the town of Panauti in order to participate in a festival. It is said that he stays with the female serpent of Nagdaha on his way to and back from Panauti. This union of the nagas, mythical half serpent, half human beings, is followed by heavy rain.There is a statue of Nag at the north-western side of the lake.

Nagdaha is rich in aquatic wildlife. Many species of native fishes such as barbs and snakeheads are abundant. Unlike in Taudaha, there are no non-native carps. This is also home to several bird species. Black kite, Black drongo, Cattle egret, Oriental magpie robin, Common myna, Jungle crow, Rose-ringed parakeet and Red-vented bulbul are some of the resident birds. Migrants include cuckoos and Eurasian coot.

Patna Bird Sanctuary

Patna Bird Sanctuary is a protected area in Uttar Pradesh's Etah district encompassing a lentic lake that is an important wintering ground for migrating birds. It was founded in 1991 and covers an area of 1.09 km2 (0.42 sq mi). With a lake area of only 1 km2 (0.39 sq mi), it is the smallest bird sanctuary in Uttar Pradesh.

The water quality of the lake supports a wide range of avifauna during winter season. The entire lake area gets covered by profuse growth of macrophytic vegetation of water hyacinth and Potamogeton species during summers.

About 200,000 birds of 300 different bird species frequent the sanctuary. More than 106 species of migratory and resident birds are known to have their resting habitats around the lake. The important aquatic birds inhabiting lake are:

Lesser whistling-duck

Graylag goose

Comb duck

Ruddy shelduck


Eurasian wigeon

Indian spot-billed duck

Northern shoveler

Northern pintail

Green-winged teal

Common pochard

Ferruginous duck

Baer's pochard

Tufted duck

Indian peafowl

Common quail

Black francolin

Gray francolin

Little grebe

Asian openbill

Woolly-necked stork

Black-necked stork

Little cormorant

Great cormorant

Purple heron

Cattle egret

Indian pond-heron

Black-headed ibis

Red-naped ibis

Eurasian spoonbill

Black-shouldered kite

Egyptian vulture

Booted eagle

Bonelli's eagle


Black kite

Eurasian coot

Sarus crane

Black-winged stilt

Black-tailed godwit

Laughing dove

Greater coucal

Rose-ringed parakeet

Plum-headed parakeet

Long-tailed shrike

Black drongo

Rufous treepie

Ashy-crowned sparrow-lark

Bengal bushlark

Red-vented bulbul

Plain leaf warbler

Ashy prinia

Plain prinia

Common babbler

Oriental magpie-robin

Brahminy starling

Common myna

Bank myna

Purple sunbird

Indian silverbill

Scaly-breasted munia

Perth Zoo

Perth Zoo is a 41-acre (17 ha) zoological park in South Perth, Western Australia. The zoo first opened in 1898 and by 2011 housed 1258 animals of 164 species and an extensive botanical collection.

It is a full institutional member of the Zoo and Aquarium Association (ZAA) and the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA).

Red-knobbed coot

The red-knobbed coot or crested coot, (Fulica cristata), is a member of the rail and crake bird family, the Rallidae.

It is a resident breeder across much of Africa and in southernmost Spain on freshwater lakes and ponds. It builds a nest of dead reeds near the water's edge or more commonly afloat, laying about 8 eggs (or more in good conditions). However, its behaviour towards its own young is so aggressive that only a few are likely to survive to adulthood.

Wagin Lake

Wagin Lake is a usually dry salt lake in the Wheatbelt region of Western Australia located on the southern edge of the town of Wagin and about 228 km (142 mi) south east of Perth. The lake is bordered on the western side by the Wagin Lake Nature Reserve, which occupies an area of 1.14 km2 (0.44 sq mi).The traditional owners of the area are the Noongar peoples in the Gnaala Karla Booja region (the Pindjarup, Wiilman and Ganeang dialectical groups). There are a number of Aboriginal sites throughout the shire, including around the lake.The Noongar name for the lake is Waitjen, having been first recorded by a surveyor in 1869-72. There is uncertainty about the meaning of "Wagin" but it is likely that it means either "the place where emus watered" or "Emu's watering hole". The town takes its name from the lake.The lake is part of a chain of wetlands situated along major ancient drainage lines in the area that run from Dumbleyung in the north to south of Wagin. The Shire of Wagin contains many large lakes and wetlands, including western parts of Lake Dumbleyung, Parkeyerring Lake, Lake Little Parkeyerring, Lake Quarbing, Lake Norring, Lake Little Norring, Lake Gundaring and Lake Wagin. The lakes are part of the catchment system of the Blackwood River but as a result of the flat topography, low average rainfall and existence of an extensive network of salt lakes, the eastern creeks and rivers rarely contribute any flows to the river.The 2,300 ha (5,700-acre) catchment area has an average rainfall of 433 mm (17.0 in) per annum and an evaporation rate of 1,873 mm (73.7 in) per annum. The landscape is a mixture of alluvial plains, dunes, small lunettes and swales found over alluvial and aeolian deposits.In February 2017 floods filled the lake to capacity; it remained filled through to the following year, attracting large flocks of black swans, egrets and ducks.When the lake contains water it acts as habitat for many species, including grey teal, pacific black duck, eurasian coot, hoary-headed grebe, pied stilts, white-faced heron, great egret and yellow-billed spoonbill.

Wildlife of Lahore District

The wildlife of the Lahore District of Pakistan includes a diverse range of natural and cultivated flora and fauna. The introduced flora of the city of Lahore comes from its cultural heritage as the regional capital of various Indian kingdoms from the 11th century to the early 20th century. Much of the Indian flora was introduced during the reign of Akbar, the third Mughal emperor.


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