Moorhen chick

The Common Moorhen chick looks like a little ball of fluffy feathers. 

The Common Moorhen (Gallinula chloropus) is a medium-sized wetlands bird found from Europe to Asia. The adult measures about 38 centimetres (15 inches) tall, with a wingspan of 62 centimetres (24 inches). The young chick, or juvenile Common Moorhen, looks similar to its parents.

The adult Common Moorhen has dark black-grey feathers, except for a white undertail. It has a white line on its side, called a flank line. It has a red frontal shield above its yellow-tipped red beak. The female is browner and duller.  

The chick has black feathers with white wispy feathers around its neck. It has a red beak without the frontal shield. 

Common Moorhen (adult)

The adult Common Moorhen has yellow legs that have no webbing between its four toes. The chick has dark coloured legs.

The female builds a nest on the ground in dense vegetation. She lays about 8 eggs which hatch after about 21 days.

Both parents feed and look after the young. 

The chick gains its adult feathers after 40-50 days, and becomes independent a few weeks afterwards. 

The Common Moorhen lives in wetlands, such as marshes, swamps, ponds, creeks, and floodplains.

Common Moorhen (adult)
Common Moorhen
Common Moorhen
Common Moorhen
Common Moorhen
Common Moorhen
Common Moorhen

[Location of photographs: Paris Zoo, France]

Photographer: Martina Nicolls

Martina Nicolls: SIMILAR BUT DIFFERENT IN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM

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