Caribbean Coot


Caribbean Coot

Taxobox
name = Caribbean Coot
status = NT | status_system = IUCN3.1
regnum = Animalia
phylum = Chordata
classis = Aves
ordo = Gruiformes
familia = Rallidae
genus = "Fulica"
species = "F. caribaea"
binomial = "Fulica caribaea"
binomial_authority = Ridgway, 1884

The Caribbean Coot ("Fulica caribaea") is a large waterbird of the family Rallidae, which is a resident breeder in the Caribbean and parts of Venezuela. It has sometimes been treated as a subspecies of American Coot, "Fulica americana".

The adults is 33-38cm long and has a short thick white bill with a reddish-brown spot near the tip and a white forehead shield. The body is grey with the head and neck darker than the rest of the body. The legs are yellow, with scalloped toes rather than webbed feet. It differs from American Coot in that the latter species has red knobs at the top of its frontal shield.

The breeding habitat is freshwater lakes and marshes. They build a nest in shallow water or floating, and lay 4-8 speckled whitish or pale brown eggs. They are frequently seen swimming in open water.

Caribbean Coots can dive for food but can also forage on land. They are omnivores, eating plant material, insects, fish, and other aquatic animals.

Their call is a high-pitched squeaking honk somewhat like a goose, similar to American Coot.

References

* Database entry includes a brief justification of why this species is near threatened
* "Birds of Venezuela" by Hilty, ISBN 0-7136-6418-5
* "Rails" by Taylor and van Perlo, ISBN 90-74345-20-4


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