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
Number of locations -
Severely Fragmented -
Population and trend
Value Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals poor estimated 2009
Population trend Decreasing estimated -
Decline (3 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (5 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (10 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (10 years/3 generation future) - - -
Decline (10 years/3 generation past and future) - - -
Number of subpopulations - - -
Percentage in largest subpopulation - - -
Generation length (yrs) 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 Occurrence status Presence Resident Breeding Non-breeding Passage
Anguilla (to UK) N Extant
Antigua and Barbuda N Extant
Aruba (to Netherlands) N Extant Yes
Bahamas N Extant
Barbados N Extant
Belize N Extant Yes
Bermuda (to UK) N Extant
Bolivia N Extant Yes
Canada N Extant Yes Yes
Cayman Islands (to UK) N Extant
Colombia N Extant
Costa Rica N Extant Yes
Cuba N Extant
Curaçao (to Netherlands) N Extant Yes
Dominica N Extant
Dominican Republic N Extant
Ecuador N Possibly Extinct
El Salvador N Extant
Greenland (to Denmark) V Extant
Grenada V Extant
Guadeloupe (to France) V Extant Yes
Guatemala N Extant
Haiti N Extant
Honduras N Extant
Iceland V Extant
Ireland V Extant
Jamaica N Extant Yes
Martinique (to France) N Extant
Mexico N Extant
Montserrat (to UK) N Extant
Nicaragua N Extant
Panama N Extant
Portugal V Extant
Puerto Rico (to USA) N Extant
St Barthelemy (to France) N Extant
St Kitts and Nevis N Extant
St Lucia N Extant
St Pierre and Miquelon (to France) N Extant Yes
St Vincent and the Grenadines N Extant
Trinidad and Tobago V Extant
Turks and Caicos Islands (to UK) N Extant
USA N Extant Yes
Venezuela N Extant
Virgin Islands (to UK) N Extant Yes
Virgin Islands (to USA) N Extant Yes

Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBA)
Country/Territory IBA Name
Mexico Humedales Costeros del Norte de la Península de Yucatán
Canada Grande Prairie - Trumpeter Swan IBA
Canada Creston Valley Wildlife Management Area
Canada Tachick and Nulki Lakes
Canada Netley-Libau Marsh
Canada Oak Hammock Marsh WMA
Canada Oak Lake/Plum Lakes Area
Canada Proven Lake WMA
Canada Langruth - Rm of Lakeview
Canada Greater Rondeau Area
Canada Eastern Lake St. Clair
Canada Marais de Saint-Étienne
Canada Canal de Beauharnois
Curaçao (to Netherlands) Malpais-St Michiel
Venezuela Morrocoy National Park
Venezuela Parque Nacional Sierra Nevada
Venezuela Refugio de Fauna Silvestre Cuare
Venezuela Parque Nacional Yacambú
Venezuela Refugio de Fauna Silvestre y Reserva de Pesca Ciénaga de Los Olivitos
Venezuela Reserva de Fauna Silvestre Tucurere
Venezuela Humedales Boca de Hueque y Sauca
Jamaica Black River Great Morass
Cayman Islands (to UK) Crown Wetlands
Cayman Islands (to UK) Central Mangrove Wetland
Anguilla (to UK) East End Pond
Bahamas Great Inagua
Bahamas Harrold and Wilson Ponds National Park
Bahamas Grog Pond
Bahamas Lucayan National Park
Bahamas Long Island and Hog Cay
Dominican Republic Cabral Lagoon
Dominican Republic Limón Lagoon
Virgin Islands (to USA) Perseverance Bay Lagoons
Sint Maarten (to Netherlands) Little Bay, Sint Maarten
Sint Maarten (to Netherlands) Fresh Pond, Sint Maarten
St Vincent and the Grenadines Ashton Wetland
St Vincent and the Grenadines Mustique Island
Antigua and Barbuda Valley Church Bay
Antigua and Barbuda Potworks Dam
Haiti Lagon-aux-Boeufs
Haiti Trou Caïman
Haiti Lac Azuéi
Barbados East Point Pond
Bahamas San Andros Pond
Bahamas Booby Rocks and Pirates Bay
Bahamas Southern Great Lake
Bahamas Low Cay, High Cay and Sandy Hook
Bahamas South Beach Tidal Flats
Virgin Islands (to USA) Virgin Islands National Park
Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba (to Netherlands) Washikemba - Fontein - Onima, Bonaire
Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba (to Netherlands) Klein Bonaire, Bonaire
Guadeloupe (to France) Barrage de Gaschet
Aruba (to Netherlands) Tierra del Sol Salina
Aruba (to Netherlands) Bubali Wetlands
Antigua and Barbuda Bethesda Dam
Curaçao (to Netherlands) Muizenberg, Curaçao
Virgin Islands (to USA) Southgate and Green Cay
Jamaica Font Hill
Mexico Reserva de la Biosfera Barranca de Metztitlán
Mexico Ciénega de Tláhuac
Colombia Laguna de la Cocha
Colombia Parque Nacional Natural de Pisba
Colombia Reserva Natural Laguna de Sonso

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 (2022) Species factsheet: Fulica americana. Downloaded from on 11/08/2022. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2022) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 11/08/2022.