Talk:Red rail

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Featured articleRed rail is a featured article; it (or a previous version of it) has been identified as one of the best articles produced by the Wikipedia community. Even so, if you can update or improve it, please do so.
Main Page trophyThis article appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page as Today's featured article on June 2, 2016.
Article milestones
August 3, 2012Good article nomineeListed
June 15, 2013Featured article candidatePromoted
Current status: Featured article

Genus content[edit]

There seems to be uncertainty over whether the Red Rail and the Rodrigues Rail should be kept in the same genus, Aphanapteryx, or in separate ones. The latest sources I have, authored by Anthony Cheke and Julian Hume, prefer to keep them separate, but literature not much older unites them. What to do? FunkMonk (talk) 20:06, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Red Rail/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: Doctree (talk · contribs) 16:11, 30 July 2012 (UTC)

GA review – see WP:WIAGA for criteria

Definitely will be a Good Article. Reviewer(s) are fixing a couple of minor problems rather than sending it back for a rewrite.

  1. Is it reasonably well written?
    A. Prose quality:
    Fixed dangling preposition in third sentence of lead.
    Grammar and spelling are correct. The writing is good. Could use the help of an editor, perhaps from the Guild of Copy Editors, to elevate the prose to engaging, even brilliant, and of a professional standard.
    B. MoS compliance for lead, layout, words to watch, fiction, and lists:
    Complies with the Manual of Style.
  2. Is it factually accurate and verifiable?
    A. References to sources:
    B. Citation of reliable sources where necessary:
    C. No original research:
  3. Is it broad in its coverage?
    A. Major aspects:
    B. Focused:
  4. Is it neutral?
    Fair representation without bias:
  5. Is it stable?
    No edit wars, etc:
  6. Does it contain images to illustrate the topic?
    A. Images are tagged with their copyright status, and valid fair use rationales are provided for non-free content:
    B. Images are provided where possible and appropriate, with suitable captions:
    Some images did not contain alternative text per MOS Accessibility Guidelines. Will insert them.
All images now contain alt= and appropriate text. DocTree (talk) 22:04, 31 July 2012 (UTC)
  1. Overall:
    Pass or Fail:

Additional Discussion[edit]

Requested an additional look from a Project BIRDS assessor. Hoping some others will take a look and provide constructive comments. Potential for Featured Article? DocTree (talk) 19:22, 31 July 2012 (UTC)

Thanks for the review and the edits. Would it be possible to make the gigantic synonym list collapsible, like the one seen at Tyrannosaurus? I've tried, but no success. FunkMonk (talk) 23:25, 1 August 2012 (UTC)
Done.DocTree (talk) 22:40, 2 August 2012 (UTC)
Thanks a lot! FunkMonk (talk) 04:59, 3 August 2012 (UTC)

See Wikipedia:Do not include the full text of lengthy primary sources. I think that MOS indicates that it would be better to paraphrase long quotations. Also it is in an old form of English and may not be readily understood all around the English speaking world. Snowman (talk) 19:42, 20 August 2012 (UTC)

The article is already a GA. But I have removed and paraphrased one quote anyway, which was incomplete and not as essential as the rest. If anything in the present quotes is hard to decipher, please note it, and I will add explanations in square brackets. FunkMonk (talk) 00:56, 21 August 2012 (UTC)

Peer review[edit]

Ok, per your request on my talk page, I'm going take a look through the article and jot down anything that could do with tweaking.

  • Seems odd to start the article with "By the 19th century"
  • "the Gelderland sketch" As you're yet to introduce this, you can't really refer to it like this
  • Is Mundy's description the earliest? How did he know about the red cap trick? How long had people already been travelling to the island?
  • "It had probably lived in the emperor's zoo for a while together with the other animals painted for the same series.[4] It was discovered in the Emperor's collection and published in 1868 by Georg von Frauenfeld, along with a painting of a Dodo from the same collection and artist.[5] It is thought to have been the only specimen that ever reached Europe.[14]" Here, "it" alternately refers to the painting and the bird. Also, why capitalise the E of emperor?
  • Ship names should be in italics, just so you know. The names of paintings should be too- is "Edwards' Dodo" the name of the painting?
  • "Extinct Mauritian reptiles include the Saddle-backed Mauritius giant tortoise, the Domed Mauritius giant tortoise, the Mauritian Giant Skink, and the Round Island Burrowing Boa. The Small Mauritian Flying Fox and the snail Tropidophora carinata lived on Mauritius and Réunion, but went extinct in both islands. Some plants, such as Casearia tinifolia and the Palm Orchid, have also become extinct.[4]" I know that the common names of birds are capitalised, but I gather others usually aren't. Also, the whole Reunion/Réunion thing again!
  • I think the last paragraph of ecology should be moved to extinction; you could then move the second blockquote above the middle paragraph so the section doesn't end on a blockquote?
  • "Mascarene expert Anthony Cheke has suggested that by the late 17th century, the name was transferred to the Red Rail, so that all post 1662 references to the Dodo are dubious." I don't follow
  • Mundy's comment at the end of the article is absolutely fascinating, but I wonder whether it belongs in the extinction section?
I think perhaps most of that section is actually about its relationship with humans, so I'll try to make extinction a subsection of that. I've moved the quote up. FunkMonk (talk) 01:22, 31 January 2013 (UTC)
  • Your referencing is a little inconsistent; if you're going to go for the "Milburn, J. L." format, go for that with all of the names?
  • The italics are off on the Schlegel footnote
  • The Longchamps citation is oddly formatted- also, I'd go with spelling out journal names
  • The Fuller note lacks an ISBN
  • Having article titles in sentence case couldn't hurt!

All in all, very nice. If you current FAC is anything to go by, this should sail through once the tweaks are made. My usual disclaimer: The articles only real flaw would be a failure to cite a certain key source, but you'd be in a better position than me to judge whether that had happened. I made a few small fixes, please double-check. Hope these thoughts are helpful! J Milburn (talk) 21:44, 16 January 2013 (UTC)

Thanks, I'll fix what you mention, and ask if there's something I don't understand. I'm also waiting for James Greenway's "Extinct and Vanishing Birds of the World" to arrive with the mail, which might provide some more info to add. I always felt this article needed "something", but I'm not sure what. There just isn't much known about the bird. FunkMonk (talk) 22:33, 16 January 2013 (UTC)
  • It appears there is a monograph on Mascarene rails in press, so I think I'll wait for that before I FAC this one. FunkMonk (talk) 12:40, 8 March 2013 (UTC)


@FunkMonk: You just reverted an anonymous editor and claimed that "We should not add (sic) unless the source does." Why do you claim this? If the original source contains a misspelling, surely "[sic]" would be appropriate? Josh Milburn (talk) 13:17, 2 June 2016 (UTC)

I'm not sure if it is a misspelling. The original says: "all the others come running up as it to its aid and can be offered the same fate." "It" could refer to "the running". Many of these old quotes are written in archaic language (though this seems to be a recent translation of 17th century German), and the wording may not make the same sense as today. So if that was the intention (which we don't know), how can we be the judge (OR) of whether it is a typo or not? FunkMonk (talk) 13:24, 2 June 2016 (UTC)
I'm not sure we'd need to play the "guess the authors' intention" game; it's more a matter of reassuring readers that this is what the authors said, no matter how wrong it looks to us. I'm not going to make the edit myself, but I'd lean towards inclusion of "[sic]". Josh Milburn (talk) 13:32, 2 June 2016 (UTC)
Seems something along those lines was just added by an IP. I'll not remove that, my objection was mainly to changing the wording itself of the quote, which is OR. So I'm happy with the current version. FunkMonk (talk) 13:37, 2 June 2016 (UTC)
Yes- for what it's worth, I agree that changing the quote would be inappropriate. Glad to see it resolved in a way with which everyone's happy... Josh Milburn (talk) 15:03, 2 June 2016 (UTC)


Could this animal be connected to an ostrich??? Nana kobina ghanaba (talk) 16:38, 2 June 2016 (UTC)

No, they're only very distantly related; take a look at List of birds#Phylogeny. Ostriches are members of the family Struthionidae, which is in the Palaeognathae clade, while this is a rail. Josh Milburn (talk) 16:46, 2 June 2016 (UTC)
Hehe, it has been physically compared to a kiwi, which is related to the ostrich, so that's the only connection I can think of... FunkMonk (talk) 16:50, 2 June 2016 (UTC)