Afrikaans name: Grootwaterhoender
The Common Moorhen is a familiar site on dams, ponds and other quiet and well-vegetated bodies of water.
The Moorhen has an almost world-wide distribution although there is some debates about the status of the species and sub-species found in different areas.
In some countries the Moorhen is called a Swamp Chicken.
The Common Moorhen can weigh up to 500 g with a length of 30 cm or more.
They nest on the ground amongst vegetation and up to 8 eggs may be laid.
Juvenile Common Moorhen's are very drably coloured (above) while adults (below) have a smart black and white plumage with a red and yellow bill.
References and further readingA First Guide to South African Birds - 7th Edition - Author: Leonard Gill - Year Published: 1975 - Page: 164
Birds of the South Western Cape - Author: Joy Frandsen - Year Published: - Page: 71
Collins Illustrated Checklist - Birds of Southern Africa - 1st edition - Author: Ber van Perlo - Year Published: 1999 - Page: 24
Field Guide to the Birds of Kruger National Park - Author: Ian Sinclair and Ian Whyte - Year Published: 1991 - Page: 80
Field Guide to the Cradle of Humankind - Author: B. Hilton-Barber & Prof. L. R. Berger - Year Published: 2004 - Page: 179
Reader's Digest Illustrated Guide to the Game Parks and Nature Reserves of Southern Africa - 2nd edi - Author: Editor - Alan Duggan - Year Published: 1991 - Page: 409
Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa - 5th Edition - Author: Gordon Lindsay Maclean - Year Published: 1985 - Page: 201
Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa - 6th Edition - Author: Gordon Lindsay Maclean - Year Published: 1993 - Page: 198
Sasol Birds of Southern Africa - 4th Edition - Author: Ian Sinclair et al. - Year Published: 2011 - Page: 144