During our visit to the Orlando Wetlands, Rick (aka sexy camera caddie!) and I went down a trail that was a peninsula between two marshes. As we approached the end, a blur of purple and green caught my eye before it disappeared into the reeds. Rather than continuing on our way, we opted to camp out for a bit and wait to see if this bird of many colors would bless us with its appearance.
Sure enough, in a matter of minutes, this Purple Gallinule (we had to consult a guide to get the name) shyly peeked out.
After a few more moments, he got a wee bit braver and let us get a better glimpse.
Finally, he crept all the way out. And before I forget to mention it, although this guy was reluctant to be seen, he was NOT reluctant to be heard – these are LOUD birds!
It was fascinating to watch him dip his head in and out of the water…
…turns out he was diving for water plants beneath the surface.
Don’t you just love his colors? I think Rainbow Rail would have been a fitting name, especially since he is a member of the Rail family.
As we watched while one of these fellows was dipping and pulling and munching, a second appeared in the open water.
He was only there for a brief moment before he got agitated by the arrival of one of his relatives, a Common Gallinule.
Then he high-winged it out of there.
I think the above picture might be my favorite of the whole trip. And I can’t help but laugh because the Gallinule is considered a swamp-hen – and this fellow really was a chicken!
I had never seen one of these vivid beauties before this trip, so it was truly a treat to get to take his picture. I am glad he decided to venture out of his hiding place!
He is definitely one gorgeous Gallinule!