guess is it is a Purple Swamphen (or a Dusky Moorhen) and yes they can fly. Not
especially skilled flyers, but given the size of the area it should easily be
able to get enough horizontal space to get over a 2 metres high fence at
any time it wishes. My guess is it would have gone in there, rather than being
fenced in. I expect likely with the construction activity it would have
retreated to the lake. Other than that, it could likely get under a several cm gap to the ground.
I subscribe, although I am essentially unschooled
about bird varieties.
I have a concern at the moment about the enormous
fenced and gouged-to-bare-earth enclosure (it must be a dozen acres) at the
south end of Lake Tuggeranong. This is the building site for the huge "South
Quay" development that is in its early stages.
This fence goes right to the water's edge. It is
over 2m high, has perhaps only several cm gap to the ground, and is
essentially unbroken over its circumference of around 3km!
Walking alongside the site yesterday I saw a fowl
of some kind in this building site. OK, it looked like a slightly smaller
version of a chook, with much longer legs. It was black and brown, seemed to
have a very tiny head and maybe a small red wattle (spelling?) under its
You may already have guessed my concern ... can
they fly? If not, it is in a predicament. The fence would have sprung up, and
enlarged, around this formerly grassy, lakeside acreage with little regard for
what may have been on the wrong side of the pre-fab fence panels.
So, perhaps someone can tell me if such a creature
could fly out. There may be others, and different species.