Animals >>

Moorhen

Moorhen (Gallinula)Moorhen (Gallinula)Moorhen (Gallinula)Moorhen (Gallinula)Moorhen (Gallinula)
[Jump to Article]

Moorhen Facts

Kingdom:
Five groups that classify all living things
Animalia
Phylum:
A group of animals within the animal kingdom
Chordata
Class:
A group of animals within a pylum
Aves
Order:
A group of animals within a class
Gruiformes
Family:
A group of animals within an order
Rallidae
Genus:
A group of animals within a family
Gallinula
Scientific Name:
Comprised of the genus followed by the species
Gallinula
Type:
The animal group that the species belongs to
Bird
Diet:
What kind of foods the animal eats
Omnivore
Size (L):
How long (L) or tall (H) the animal is
25cm - 38cm (10in - 15in)
Wing Span:
The measurement from one wing tip to the other
50cm - 80cm (20in - 31in)
Weight:
The measurement of how heavy the animal is
70g - 400g (2.5oz - 14oz)
Top Speed:
The fastest recorded speed of the animal
35km/h (22mph)
Life Span:
How long the animal lives for
1 - 3 years
Lifestyle:
Whether the animal is solitary or sociable
Flock
Conservation Status:
The likelihood of the animal becoming extinct
Least Concern
Colour:
The colour of the animal's coat or markings
Black, White, Brown
Skin Type:
The protective layer of the animal
Feathers
Favourite Food:Insects
Habitat:
The specific area where the animal lives
Marshes, wetlands and ponds
Average Clutch Size:
The average number of eggs laif at once
7
Main Prey:Insects, Rodents, Berries
Predators:
Other animals that hunt and eat the animal
Foxes, Dogs, Raccoons
Distinctive Features:
Characteristics unique to the animal
Small rounded head and pointed beak

Moorhen Location

Map of Moorhen Locations

Moorhen

The moorhen is a generally small-sized bird that is commonly found near large bodies of water such as marshes, ponds and streams. The moorhen is most commonly known for its small black-feathered body and (often) red, pointed beak.

There are seven different species of moorhen that are found all over the world today from the dusky moorhen of Australia to the lesser moorhen of Africa, and the spot-flanked moorhen of South America. The common moorhen is found throughout the world but does not occur in the polar regions or in tropical rainforests.

Moorhens spend their life on the water and have a number of adaptations including webbed-toes which aids the moorhen in both swimming and walking about on the slippery banks that line the water's edge. Moorhens are very sociable birds and spends their lives with other moorhens in a group known as a flock.

Moorhens are omnivorous birds and have diet that primarily consists of small invertebrates such as insects and water-spiders. Moorhens also eat larger animals such as small rodents and lizards and also pick at plants including berries, fruits and seeds.

Due to its relatively small size, the moorhen generally has a number of predators but this varies depending on the area in which the moorhen lives. Canines including foxes, dogs, coyotes, raccoons and dingos are the main predators of the moorhen along with large reptiles and wildcats.

Female moorhens begin to build themselves a nest on the ground in which to lay their eggs, in early spring. The female moorhen then lays an average of 7 eggs although the exact number is dependant on the species. The moorhen chicks hatch out of the eggs after just a few weeks, and both the mother and father moorhens helps to incubate the eggs and feed the chicks.

Despite their environment being drastically altered by habitat loss and pollution, the common moorhen have proved to be a very hardy bird as it stills thrives in most areas. Other moorhen species however are sadly listed as either vulnerable or endangered.

Moorhen Comments

christian
"This page was very helpfull and i got an a on my assignment because of it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
cloud johnsontons
"i think birds r great!"
Showing 2 of 2 comments.

Post Comment

Please enter a nickname which you can use to identify your comment, but which others can not use to identify you. Please do not use your online usernames/handles which you use for social networking.

Article Tools

Add to Phobia Filter
Update your Moorhen phobia filter.
Print Article
View printer friendly version of Moorhen article.
Source/Reference Article
Learn how you can use or cite the Moorhen article in your website content, school work and other projects.

First Published: 11th January 2010, Last Updated: 9th January 2017 [View Sources]

Sources:
1. Christopher Perrins, Oxford University Press (2009) The Encyclopedia Of Birds [Accessed at: 11 Jan 2010]
2. David Burnie, Dorling Kindersley (2008) Illustrated Encyclopedia Of Animals [Accessed at: 11 Jan 2010]
3. David Burnie, Kingfisher (2011) The Kingfisher Animal Encyclopedia [Accessed at: 01 Jan 2011]
4. Dorling Kindersley (2006) Dorling Kindersley Encyclopedia Of Animals [Accessed at: 11 Jan 2010]
5. Richard Mackay, University of California Press (2009) The Atlas Of Endangered Species [Accessed at: 11 Jan 2010]
6. Tom Jackson, Lorenz Books (2007) The World Encyclopedia Of Animals [Accessed at: 11 Jan 2010]

Are you Safe?

Are you Safe? is an online safety campaign by A-Z-Animals.com. If something has upset you, the Are you Safe? campaign can help you to speak to someone who can help you.

Are you Safe?
Subscribe to A-Z Animals and enjoy our website without advertising! Subscribe Now