(Gallinula tenebrosa)

Length:  35-40 cm Common

The Dusky Moorhen is Australasia’s representative of the Eurasian Moorhen. It is widespread and uses diverse wetlands. These are usually fresh water including swamps, lakes and estuaries with deep reed margins and grassy banks. The Dusky Moorhen feeds by day both in the water and on the land. It is always wary and quick to run for cover. In alarm it runs with flapping wings.

The Dusky Moorhen eats land and aquatic plants, insects, fish, molluscs and worms. They are territorial and form small groups. At night they retire to nesting platforms up to 2 metres above the water. The female initiates courtship and will mate with all males in the group. All birds participate in nest building among the reeds. Two broods per season. Eggs: 5 to 8; off white with red brown blotches.