The pukeko is a widespread and easily recognisable bird that has benefitted greatly by the clearing of land for agriculture. In addition to its brilliant red frontal shield and deep violet breast plumage, the pukeko is interesting for having a complex social life. In many areas, pukeko live in permanent social groups and defend a shared territory that is used for both feeding and breeding. Social groups can have multiple breeding males and females, but all eggs are laid in a single nest and the group offspring are raised by all group members.
The pukeko is a large, conspicious rail found throughout New Zealand. The head, breast and throat are deep blue/violet, the back and wings are black, and the under-tail coverts are conspicuously white. The conical bright red bill is connected to a similarly coloured ‘frontal shield’ ornament covering the forehead, the eyes are also red. The legs and feet are orange, with long, slim toes. Females are smaller than males, but similarly coloured. Juveniles are similar to adults but duller, with black eyes and black bill and shield that turn to red around 3 months of age.
More information available here at NZ Birds Online.
I want to showcase our animal kingdom. It runs from Tuesday New Zealand time and is weekly. You can join in anytime at all over the week. You can post your furry friends (babies), wild animals, birds, insects and butterflies. Even reptiles are welcome.
Just use this logo and link back to this blog.
I look forward to seeing all the different animals around the world
Thanks to Aletta for taking part.
Thanks for visiting.