American Coot Fulica americana


Taxonomic note
Fulica americana (del Hoyo and Collar 2014) was previously split as F. americana and F. caribaea following Sibley and Monroe (1990, 1993).

Taxonomic source(s)
del Hoyo, J., Collar, N.J., Christie, D.A., Elliott, A. and Fishpool, L.D.C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Lynx Edicions BirdLife International, Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge, UK.
del Hoyo, J.; Collar, N. J.; Christie, D. A.; Elliott, A.; Fishpool, L. D. C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International.

IUCN Red List criteria met and history
Red List criteria met
Critically Endangered Endangered Vulnerable
- - -

Red List history
Year Category Criteria
2016 Least Concern
2014 Least Concern
Species attributes

Migratory status full migrant Forest dependency does not normally occur in forest
Land-mass type Average mass -

Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 25,500,000 medium
Extent of Occurrence non-breeding (km2) 20,600,000 medium
Severely fragmented? no -
Population and trend
Value Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
Number of mature individuals poor estimated 2009
Population trend decreasing estimated -
Generation length (years) 7 - - -

Population justification: The population is estimated to number 6,000,000 individuals.

Trend justification: This species has undergone a small or statistically insignificant decrease over the last 40 years in North America (data from Breeding Bird Survey and/or Christmas Bird Count: Butcher and Niven 2007).

Country/territory distribution
Country/Territory Presence Origin Resident Breeding Non-breeding Passage
Anguilla (to UK) extant native
Antigua and Barbuda extant native
Aruba (to Netherlands) extant native yes
Bahamas extant native
Barbados extant native
Belize extant native yes
Bermuda (to UK) extant native
Bolivia extant native yes
Canada extant native yes yes
Cayman Islands (to UK) extant native
Colombia extant native
Costa Rica extant native yes
Cuba extant native
Curaçao (to Netherlands) extant native yes
Dominica extant native
Dominican Republic extant native
Ecuador possibly extinct native
El Salvador extant native
Greenland (to Denmark) extant vagrant
Grenada extant vagrant
Guadeloupe (to France) extant vagrant yes
Guatemala extant native
Haiti extant native
Honduras extant native
Iceland extant vagrant
Ireland extant vagrant
Jamaica extant native yes
Martinique (to France) extant native
Mexico extant native
Montserrat (to UK) extant native
Nicaragua extant native
Panama extant native
Portugal extant vagrant
Puerto Rico (to USA) extant native
St Barthelemy (to France) extant native
St Kitts and Nevis extant native
St Lucia extant native
St Pierre and Miquelon (to France) extant native yes
St Vincent and the Grenadines extant native
Trinidad and Tobago extant vagrant
Turks and Caicos Islands (to UK) extant native
USA extant native yes
Venezuela extant native
Virgin Islands (to UK) extant native yes
Virgin Islands (to USA) extant native yes

Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBA)
Country/Territory IBA Name
Venezuela Humedales Boca de Hueque y Sauca
Venezuela Refugio de Fauna Silvestre y Reserva de Pesca Ciénaga de Los Olivitos
Venezuela Morrocoy National Park
Venezuela Parque Nacional Yacambú
Sint Maarten (to Netherlands) Fresh Pond, Sint Maarten
Dominican Republic Cabral Lagoon
Dominican Republic Limón Lagoon
Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba (to Netherlands) Washikemba - Fontein - Onima, Bonaire
Aruba (to Netherlands) Bubali Wetlands
Aruba (to Netherlands) Tierra del Sol Salina
Antigua and Barbuda Valley Church Bay
Antigua and Barbuda Bethesda Dam
Curaçao (to Netherlands) Muizenberg, Curaçao
Virgin Islands (to USA) Southgate and Green Cay
Curaçao (to Netherlands) Malpais-St Michiel
Venezuela Refugio de Fauna Silvestre Cuare
Venezuela Reserva de Fauna Silvestre Tucurere
Venezuela Parque Nacional Sierra Nevada
Jamaica Black River Great Morass
Haiti Lac Azuéi
Haiti Trou Caïman

Habitats & altitude
Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Marine Intertidal Salt Marshes (Emergent Grasses) suitable resident
Wetlands (inland) Bogs, Marshes, Swamps, Fens, Peatlands major resident
Wetlands (inland) Permanent Freshwater Lakes (over 8ha) suitable resident
Wetlands (inland) Permanent Freshwater Marshes/Pools (under 8ha) suitable resident
Altitude 0 - 3400 m Occasional altitudinal limits  

Purpose Primary form used Life stage used Source Scale Level Timing
Food - human - - - non-trivial recent
Pets/display animals, horticulture - - - international non-trivial recent
Sport hunting/specimen collecting - - - non-trivial recent

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Species factsheet: Fulica americana. Downloaded from on 25/09/2023. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2023) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 25/09/2023.