Sep 24, 2009

Common Moorhen

The Common Moorhen (Gallinula chloropus) is from the Rail family, widespread and lives mainly around well vegetated marshes, ponds and canals. Their diet consists of vegetable material and small aquatic creatures including fishes as you can see below. The adults have dark plumage, yellow legs and a red facial shield, but the young are different, they are browner and lack the red shield. They build nests with leaves of aquatic plants usually above the water surface in dense vegetation. They are monogamous and both incubate. After hatching the young are able to move, the parents feed them several weeks and shepherd them up to 2 months until they are independent.
This series represents only juvenile birds. The fishing guy I found completely accidentally. In fact he has landed near to my boat, as I was set up slightly camouflaged to capture some great grebes. He ate first some plants, and caught quickly that fish. After some proteins in stomach he decided to take a bath, arrange the feathers and to prepare to sleep.


  1. These are a great sequence of shots Andor. I have never seen a Moorhen eat fish; till now. Amazing capture.

  2. another great set of images. what lens did you use?

  3. Hi Andor,
    Wow!! That is a sequence of pictures mate! Excellent, beautiful, awesome!! So beautiful to see this bird like this and the fishing shots are excellent man! Yes me neither, I've never seen them eating fish!

  4. Thanks guys! The fish eating moorhen is a premiere for me too.

    @dev wijewardane - I use since 2-3 months a 500mm/f4 lens with or without 1,4X extender. It makes a pretty good job.

  5. Awesome series of photos Andor. You were in the Moment at the perfect angle with perfect light and perfect background and exciting behaviour to take in.

  6. Hello Andor.
    I'm glad to discover your beautiful and interesting Blog.
    My Yellow Hornbill picture was taken in Kgalagadi National Park,between SA and Botswana:
    difficult to say on which side:there are no fences...

  7. Very nice photography.

  8. @all - thanks for your comments.

    @unseen rajasthan and abraham lincoln - welcome!

    @andrea - thank you for your answer and welcome!