Whether wintering in the south or spending the summer in the north, coots live along waterways. They are freshwater birds and live in the shallows of freshwater lakes, ponds or marshes, although they may be seen in brackish water occasionally. A highly social bird species that lives in flocks. They are migratory, and migrate as a flock. Their migration, though, is based on the weather and therefore highly irregular. Coots sometimes gather in winter flocks of several thousand, sometimes mixing with other waterfowl. They sometimes steal food from others including ducks.