Blackish rail

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Blackish rail
Pardirallus nigricans-Blackish Rail.jpg
Blackish rail at Jacutinga, Minas Gerais State, Brazil
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Gruiformes
Family: Rallidae
Genus: Pardirallus
Species: P. nigricans
Binomial name
Pardirallus nigricans
(Vieillot, 1819)

Ortygonax nigricans

The blackish rail (Pardirallus nigricans) is a species of bird in the rail family Rallidae from South America. The species is closely related to the plumbeous rail, and has been treated as being the same species, or placed with that species in the genus Ortygonax. It has also been placed in the genus Rallus.[2]

The blackish rail has a disjunct distribution. The nominate race is found from north-eastern Brazil south to south-east Brazil and west to northern Argentina and eastern Paraguay. A second disjunct population forms a rough crescent from western Brazil through Bolivia and central Peru to nearly the border with Colombia. The third population, from the subspecies O. n.caucae is found in central Colombia (it is named for the Cauca River). The species has also been reported in western Venezuela, but it is not known which subspecies this is or whether it represents a population or vagrant.[2]

Its natural habitat is swamps, wetlands, wet grasslands and rice fields, from sea-level to 2,200 m (7,200 ft) (and occasionally 4,080 m (13,390 ft). They are not known to be migratory, but they have turned up in unexpected places, and are usually shy and retiring, so are poorly known.[2]

Little is known about their behaviour. They are assumed to feed on invertebrates and insects. A nest has been described as a cup placed on a stump. The clutch size is 2-3 and incubation time (in captivity) is 18-21 days. The black downy chicks leave the nest as soon as they hatch, and both parents care for the chicks.[2]


  1. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Pardirallus nigricans". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c d Taylor, B. (2017). Blackish Rail (Pardirallus nigricans). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 4 March 2017).