top of page

American Coot

(Fulica americana) - North America

Photo by 





Lifecycle: American Coots breed in marshes and wetlands, building nests near the water's edge. They are known for their aggressive territorial behavior during the breeding season.
Behavior: They are strong swimmers and are often seen foraging in the water, where they use their lobed toes to paddle. They can also be observed walking on floating vegetation.
Vocalizations: American Coots have a range of calls, including grunts and clucks.


Diet: American Coots are primarily herbivorous, feeding on aquatic plants and algae. They also consume small invertebrates and aquatic insects.
Feeding Behavior: They forage by diving and swimming underwater, using their lobed toes to search for food. They are known for their ability to forage in both shallow and deep water.

The American Coot is a bird species native to North America. It is known for its distinctive appearance, including a white bill and black plumage. These birds are often found in wetlands and are part of the rail family.


Size: American Coots are medium-sized birds, typically measuring about 34 to 43 cm (13 to 17 inches) in length, with a wingspan of 58 to 71 cm (23 to 28 inches).
Appearance: They have black plumage, a white bill, and red eyes. Their legs and feet are greenish-gray, and they have lobed toes, which make them well-adapted for swimming.


American Coots are commonly found in a variety of wetland habitats, including freshwater lakes, ponds, marshes, and coastal estuaries. They prefer areas with abundant aquatic vegetation.
Nests: They build nests in shallow water, constructing floating platforms from reeds, cattails, and other wetland vegetation.

bottom of page