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American Purple Gallinule

Porphyrio martinica


American Purple Gallinule (Porphyrio martinica) foraging at Anhinga Trail, Everglades National Park, Florida.


The American Purple Gallinule (Porphyrio martinica) is a "swamp hen" in the rail family Rallidae. A medium-sized rail (33 centimetres (13 in) in length) with big yellow feet, purple-blue plumage with a green back, and red and yellow bill. It has a pale blue forehead shield and white undertail. Juveniles are brown overall with a brownish olive back. Their breeding habitat is warm swamps and marshes in southeastern states of the United States and the tropical regions of Central America, the Caribbean and northern South America. This species is resident in southern Florida and the tropics, but most American birds are migratory, wintering south to Argentina. The nest is a floating structure in a marsh. Five to ten eggs are laid. Their coloration is buff with brown spots. The diet of these rails is omnivorous, being known to include a wide variety of plant and animal matter, including seeds, leaves and fruits of both aquatic and terrestrial plants, as well as insects, frogs, snails, spiders, earthworms and fish. They have also been known to eat the eggs and young of other birds. (Credit:

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DonnaPomeroy 11 years ago

stunning series of photos

LarryGraziano 11 years ago

Great spotting for the color Blue!!!

KatCuff 11 years ago

Great series!

Arun 11 years ago

Nice spotting ..

Spotted by

Homestead, Florida, USA

Spotted on Feb 13, 2010
Submitted on Jan 9, 2012

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