Virginia rail (Rallus limicola)
CONFIRMATION STATUS: Confirmed.
Length: 7.5 inches Wingspan: 14 inches
Fairly small, chunky, short-tailed, round-winged, ground-dwelling marsh bird
Long, slightly decurved bill
Most often seen walking, rarely flies
Often flicks and cocks short tail while walking, exposing white under- tail coverts
Legs brown or orange
Supraloral stripe and throat whitish
Rust-colored breast and belly
Dark crown and back, edged tawny brown
Black and white barred flanks
Bill color duller than in adult
Whitish about foreneck and breast
Gray-black hindneck, back and flanks
Barring on flanks indistinct
Downy young Virginia rails can be mistaken for black rails but have dark
(not red) eyes, and lack spots on the back and barring on the flanks. King
and clapper rails are much larger and have duller bills and less contrast
between the cheek and underparts. Other rails have much shorter bills.
Breeding Habitat: Wetland-open water
Clutch Size: 6-13
Length of Incubation: 18-20 days
Days to Fledge: 25
Number of Broods: 2?
Diet: Almost exclusively insects; lesser quantities of fish, aquatic inver-
tebrates, and seeds
SKY MEADOWS DISTRIBUTION/SEASONAL OCCURRENCE
Relative abundance and seasonal occurrence are indicated in red below.
C - Common: Likely to be present in good numbers in appropriate habitat and season.
U - Uncommon: May be present in appropriate habitat and season, often in low
O - Occassional: Found in appropriate habitat perhaps only a few times per season,
sometimes low numbers.
R - Rare: May not be recorded every year.
Acc - Accidental: Recorded once or twice, may not be expected again for a long time.
Sp - Spring: March, April, May R
Su - Summer: June, July, August R
Fall: September, October, November
Winter: December, January, February
Crooked Run Valley