Monday, 6 October 2014


The Purple Swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio) is a large rail. It is mainly dusky black above, with a broad dark blue collar, and dark blue to purple below. As the Purple Swamphen walks, it flicks its tail up and down, revealing its white undertail. The bill is red and robust, and the legs and feet orange-red. For such a bulky bird, the Swamphen is an accomplished flier and will readily take to the air to escape danger. In flight, the long legs and elongated toes trail behind or hang underneath the body. Purple Swamphens are proficient swimmers, but prefer to wander on the edges of the water, among reeds and on floating vegetation.

Purple Swamphens are common throughout eastern and northern Australia, with a separate subspecies common in the extreme south-west of the continent. Birds have transported themselves from Australia to New Guinea and New Zealand and throughout the islands of the south-west Pacific. It has been suggested that the New Zealand population of Purple Swamphens (locally called the Pukeko) originated in Australia.

This post is part of the Nature Footsteps Inspiring Photography meme,
and also part of the Monday Mellow Yellows meme,
and also part of the Blue Monday meme.


  1. Hi Nick,

    Ooo, they're blue-tiful!

    Have a Happy Blue Monday!

  2. Such dramatic and colorful markings on this bird, Nick. And how fortunate that the water eddies echo the blue color. Almost like you planned it! Wish we had more colorful birds like this in my part of the U.S.

  3. Such a bright blue and beautiful bird.

  4. Oh Smiling Sally took the word out of my mouth. Great Nick!

    Nice if you comment on my page. It will take you to my blog. In to Imagination if you click.

    Had issues with my Imagination page. Please let me know if you are okay getting in. It helps me to know. Many have written me private to say. They cannot get in. Some have not added me into their address book perhaps.

  5. What a stunning bird and with a name like Swamphen ... you would think someone could come up with a name more becoming. These are beautiful pictures, Nick ... I am hoping someday you will be able to post one flying with their big feet flapping in the wind :)

    Andrea @ From The Sol

  6. Terrific capture...lovely birds♪

  7. O, how beautiful they are...And your photo is sooo good.

  8. What a beautiful blue on the birds, and the orange bills really set it off. Great capture with the reflections in the water too. Why are the tropical birds so much more colorful?

  9. I saw lot´s of them during my recent visit to Queensland. :)

  10. What a cracking photo, love the way the blue of the swamphens stands out so much.

    I've started my own meme recently - photo of the week - and I'd love you to come link up with us, the idea is to link up photographers/bloggers best photos of each week. Hope to see you there.