Range and Habitat
American Coot: Breeds from British Columbia, western Canada, and New York locally southward. Usually spends winters north to British Columbia, Kansas, Illinois, and Massachusetts. Preferred habitats include open ponds and marshes. Found on coastal bays and inlets, often occurring in large rafts during winter.
Coots are kleptoparasitic, which means that when they don’t feel like hunting for their own food, they’ll steal their meal from other birds.
Even though the American Coot swims like a duck, they do not have webbed feet, the toes have lobes on the sides of each segment.
They are nicknamed "marsh hen" or "mud hen" because of they way their heads bob when they walk or swim.
A group of coots has many collective nouns, including a "codgery", "commotion", "fleet", "shoal", and "swarm" of coots.