Monday, 19 November 2007

Pukeko (Purple Swamp Hen) Porphyrio porphyrio

About half a metre tall this abundant native bird is iconic and very much in evidence wherever there is water or marsh for it to live. They wander everywhere and, although when disturbed they can run or fly for cover, the ones round here seem completely unphased by humans and their contraptions. They fly high at night with a loud harsh screech, the surprise factor of which is quite disturbing if it happens to be near you.

Rather curiously I've never photographed one without something in its beak - these photos were not all taken at the same time. It looks as thoug they have been harvesting bulbs of some sort.

I had intended to post this yesterday but on Rotowhenua Road (where I've taken all the photos) on the way into town I came across the Pukeko and chicks. I'd never seen chicks before. So I thought I'd add the 'ahh' factor.

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