Common Gallinule/ Moorhen

Gallinula galeata
(G. chloropus)

Photo © by Robert Shantz

This photograph, copyrighted by Robert Shantz, was taken at Patagonia Lake State Park, Santa Cruz County, Arizona on March 5, 2007.

These duck-shaped birds have bright red on the forehead and beak and a yellow beak tip to set them off from similar-looking American Coot which has a white beak. In the Sonoran Desert Common Moorhens inhabit marshy edges of slow rivers, lakes and ponds where they forage in floating vegetation. Such wet habitats are, of course, limited in the desert. The duel names result from the fact that this bird, or its closely related counterpart, ranges across the warmer regions of Europe and Asia.

Year-round Resident - some migration - less common in winter

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More Information:

Sonoran Desert Field Guide
Sonoran Desert Places
Sonoran Desert Naturalist Home Page

Copyright Michael J. Plagens, page created 18 May 2007
updated 18 Nov. 2018.