marsh hen


Also found in: Thesaurus, Wikipedia.
Related to marsh hen: clapper rail

marsh hen

n.
Any of various marsh birds of the family Rallidae, which includes the gallinules, coots, and rails.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

marsh hen

n
(Animals) any bird that frequents marshes and swamps, esp a rail, coot, or gallinule
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014

marsh′ hen`


n.
any of various rails or raillike birds.
[1700–10]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.marsh hen - a coot found in North Americamarsh hen - a coot found in North America  
coot - slate-black slow-flying birds somewhat resembling ducks
2.marsh hen - any of various small aquatic birds of the genus Gallinula distinguished from rails by a frontal shield and a resemblance to domestic hensmarsh hen - any of various small aquatic birds of the genus Gallinula distinguished from rails by a frontal shield and a resemblance to domestic hens
aquatic bird - wading and swimming and diving birds of either fresh or salt water
Florida gallinule, Gallinula chloropus cachinnans - North American dark bluish-grey gallinule
Gallinula chloropus, moorhen - black gallinule that inhabits ponds and lakes
purple gallinule - gallinules with showy purplish plumage
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in classic literature ?
It is separated from the main land by a scarcely perceptible creek, oozing its way through a wilderness of reeds and slime, a favorite resort of the marsh hen. The vegetation, as might be supposed, is scant, or at least dwarfish.
A good marsh hen tide can occur during a new moon or full moon, when the water is high enough to cover most of the vegetation where the birds normally hide.
The marsh hen hunting in these same flats can be shoulder-numbing.
After a childhood spent on the Gulf Coast of Texas and Florida, I'd associated rail hunting with the "marsh hens" we chased in that region; large clapper and king rail subspecies.