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Purple Gallinule
Porphyrio porphyrio

Map of the common names

Marshy species, L 50 cm, unmistakable, has a uniform dark purple-blue plumage contrasting with red bill, forehead, eyes and legs. The species lives in wetlands (including marshes, lakes and reservoirs with stable water-level) which provide dense areas of vegetation ( mainly reedmace Typha, reedsPhragmites and sedges Carex). Rice-fields may constitute an impotant source of food. Resident.

Watercolour by Serge Nicolle

Reasons for the need for protection/inclusion in annex I
The Purple Gallinule is rare and occurs in small numbers (3,000 breeding pairs) in EU. In Spain, it is increasing in numbers during last five years. The most important threats are habitat loss, the use of pesticides, illegal hunting and disturbances during the breeding season. The population in the Guadalquivir marshes is threatened principally through the disturbance of breeding birds by fishermen catching red swamp crawfish, and the funnel traps used in this process sometimes also catch and kill young Purple Gallinules.

Distribution map

yellow = summer visitor
green = resident
blue = winter visitor

Population :
3,000 / 4,000 pairs

Drawing by Manuel Manolos

back to list of threatened species