Eurasian coot — Fulica atra

A unique stout waterbird, the adult of this species displays a dark gray plumage overall, complemented by a white bill and forehead shield. Juveniles, distinguished by a paler breast and a less vibrant bill, gradually develop a brighter white hue with age. Notable when striding along the shore are its large feet adorned with lobed toes. This bird is found in both freshwater and brackish marshes, along lakeshores, and within river systems, occasionally venturing into saltwater environments. Breeding pairs exhibit aggressive territorial behavior, yet during nonbreeding periods, flocks can swell to hundreds in number. Its appearance is unmistakable across much of its habitat range, though it warrants comparison with the closely resembling Red-knobbed Coot in regions of overlap. Its vocalizations encompass a variety of high-pitched squeaks, squawks, and succinct, clipped notes.

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Description Eurasian coot — Fulica atra

1200The Fulica atra, commonly known as the Eurasian coot, is a species of bird in the rail and crake family, Rallidae. Here are some main points about the distribution of the Eurasian coot:

1. Global Distribution: The Eurasian coot has a widespread distribution across the Palearctic, Oriental, and African regions. It is found in Europe, Asia, Australia, and parts of Africa.

2. Europe: In Europe, the Eurasian coot is found in a variety of habitats including lakes, ponds, wetlands, and marshes. It is a resident breeder in many European countries, with populations present in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, and other countries.

3. Asia: The species is also found across Asia, including regions such as India, China, Japan, and Southeast Asia. It inhabits freshwater and brackish water habitats in these areas.

4. Africa: In Africa, the Eurasian coot can be found in various countries, including Egypt, Sudan, Ethiopia, and South Africa. It prefers shallow lakes, lagoons, and slow-moving rivers in its African range.

5. Australia: The Eurasian coot has been introduced to Australia and can be found in various habitats across the continent, including lakes, ponds, and urban water bodies.

6. Migratory Behavior: While the Eurasian coot is primarily a resident species in many parts of its range, some populations are known to undertake seasonal migrations, particularly in response to changing water levels and food availability.

7. Expansion into New Areas: The Eurasian coot has demonstrated adaptability and has successfully expanded its range into new areas, often taking advantage of human-modified habitats such as urban ponds and reservoirs.

Overall, the distribution of the Eurasian coot is diverse and encompasses a wide range of geographical regions, habitats, and ecological conditions. Its adaptability to various environments has allowed it to thrive in many parts of the world.

In conclusion, the Eurasian coot, or Fulica atra, is a globally distributed species that can be found in Europe, Asia, Africa, and Australia. It inhabits a variety of freshwater and brackish water habitats, and while it is primarily a resident species in many areas, it also demonstrates some migratory behavior. Its adaptability and ability to colonize new areas have contributed to its success across different regions.

Listen to them sing Eurasian coot — Fulica atra

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