Gallinula tenebrosa

Written by on April 12, 2012 in Indonesia Bird with 0 Comments

Gallinula tenebrosa, Dusky Moorhen,  Mandar Kelam

The Dusky MoorhGallinula-tenebrosa-01-400en (Gallinula tenebrosa) is a bird in the rail family. It occurs in Australia, New Guinea and Indonesia.

The New Guinea birds are smaller, at 25-32 cm in length, than the Australian race (35-40 cm, 55-65 cm wingspan). In Indonesia, this species is declining due to competition from the closely-related Common Moorhen on the islands where both birds occur.

The adult Dusky Moorhen is mainly dark grey-black, with a browner tinge to the upper parts. It has a red frontal shield and yellow-tipped red bill like its Eurasian relative, but lacks the white flank line shown by Common Moorhen, and has orange-yellow rather than yellow legs.

Sexes are similar, but young birds have mid-brown plumage. This is a noisy species with a loud kruk call.

Dusky Moorhen is found in wetland habitats, with a preference for freshwater marshes. It will forage on rubbish tips, and is generally omnivorous, taking a wide variety of plant and animal food.

This species builds a bulky nest at the water’s edge, and lays 5-18 whitish eggs. It is territorial when breeding, but otherwise gregarious.


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