8-9 3/4" (20-25 cm). Olive brown above with broad black streaks and fine white lines; gray head, neck and breast; underparts barred black, white, and gray; black face extending partly down neck; short yellow bill; yellow feet. Short tail often held cocked reveals white under tail. Immature is browner and lacks throat patch.
Similar Species- Yellow Rail, Virginia Rail, Common Moorhen, American Coot
Rapid descending whinny of very short, shrill dee notes. In spring an ascending ner-wee?
Breeds from southeastern Alaska, east to Newfoundland, and south locally to northwestern Baja California, southern New Mexico, eastern Colorado, southern Missouri, central Ohio, and Maryland. Winters regularly from central California, east to southern Texas and Gulf Coast, and south through Central America to portions of South America.
Eats mollusks, insects, seeds of marsh plants, and duckweed.
Usually nests on ground or vegetation; occasionally builds nest over water. Frequently conceals nest with vegetation. Forages on ground. Departs dense cover mostly in early morning and evening. roosts communally in cattails or other dense vegetation when not breeding.
Both sexes incubate 6- 18 eggs (commonly 10-12) for 18-20 days. Young are tended by both parents, and leave nest within 1-2 days (but may return at night for brooding).
|Status:||Protected nongame species|
No references are available at this time.