Aust birds    Bird names   News   1-26    Habitats    Key plants    Glossary    Plumage    Nests    Tips    Thumbnails    Gen. info    Sponsors    Photos for sale   
NON-PASSERINES     1    2    3    4    5    6    7    8    9    10     11     12     13     14 15     16     17     18     19     20     21     22     23     24     25     26     PASSERINES
Common names sorted alphabetically: A   B   C   D   E   F   G   H   I   J   K   L   M   N   O   P   Q   R   S   T   W   Y  

7

Buff-banded Rail

(Gallirallus philippensis)
Alternate name(s): "Banded Landrail", "Buff-banded Landrail", "Landrail", "Painted Rail", "Pectoral Rail", "Corn-crake", "Little Tarler Bird"
Aboriginal name(s): Race "mellori": "kooli" (WA)

Size: 28-32 cm
Weight: 150-210 g

Similar species

Description     Classification     Distribution     Sightings     Photos     Breeding     Nest     Eggs     Behaviour     Food     Call/s

Physical description

Click here for a physical description

Taxonomy, classification

See Buff-banded Rail at Wikipedia .

Range, habitat, finding this species

Click here for information on habitat and range

Sightings

Click here for sighting information

Photos

Race "mellori"

ADULT

Frontal view of a Buff-banded Rail (photo courtesy of L. Scott)
[Roseberry Creek Valley, near Toonumbar NP, northern NSW, January 2016]

Frontal view of a Buff-banded Rail (photo courtesy of R. Plumtree)
[Ensay South, East Gippsland, VIC, December 2015]

Frontal view of a very scruffy-looking, possibly moulting, Buff-banded Rail (photo courtesy of A. Ross-Taylor)
[Broadbeach, Gold Coast, QLD, March 2014]

Lateral view of a Buff-banded Rail
[Inverell, NSW, January 2017]

Lateral view of a Buff-banded Rail (photo courtesy of R. Plumtree)
[Ensay South, East Gippsland, VIC, December 2015]

Lateral view of a very scruffy-looking, possibly moulting, Buff-banded Rail (photo courtesy of A. Ross-Taylor)
[Broadbeach, Gold Coast, QLD, March 2014]

Lateral view of a Buff-banded Rail (photo courtesy of A. Ross-Taylor)
[Kuranda Wildlife Park near Cairns, QLD, April 2012]

Lateral view of a Buff-banded Rail (photo courtesy of C. Kellenberg)
[Lord Howe Island, July 2010]

Lateral view of a Buff-banded Rail (photo courtesy of J. Greaves)
[Lake Claremont, Perth, WA, January 2015]

Dorsal view of a Buff-banded Rail
[Inverell, NSW, January 2017]

Lateral view of a Buff-banded Rail swimming near the edge of a lake
[Narrabri Lake, NSW, May 2012]

Buff-banded Rail shaking itself (photo courtesy of A. Ross-Taylor)
[Broadbeach, Gold Coast, QLD, March 2014]

IMMATURE/JUVENILE

Adult Buff-banded Rail, right, with juvenile in tow (photo courtesy of B. Hensen)
[Lover's Bay, Lord Howe Island, November 2014]

Juvenile Buff-banded Rail (photo courtesy of B. Hensen)
[Lover's Bay, Lord Howe Island, November 2014]

Adult Buff-banded Rail with two of in total five chicks (photo courtesy of R. Druce)
[Queen Mary Falls, near Killarney, QLD, October 2015]

Race "tounelieri"

ADULT

Frontal view of a Buff-banded Rail (photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Lady Musgrave Island, near Agnes Water, QLD, September 2017]

Near-frontal view of a Buff-banded Rail (photo courtesy of M. Mearns)
[Lady Elliot Island, near Agnes Water, QLD, January 2016]

Lateral view of a Buff-banded Rail (photo courtesy of M. Mearns)
[Lady Elliot Island, near Agnes Water, QLD, January 2016]

Lateral view of a Buff-banded Rail (photo courtesy of H. Mouritsen)
[One Tree Island, Capricornia Cays NP, QLD, January 2011]

Near-dorsal view of a Buff-banded Rail (photo courtesy of H. Mouritsen)
[One Tree Island, Capricornia Cays NP, QLD, January 2011]

Dorsal view of a Buff-banded Rail (photo courtesy of M. Mearns)
[Lady Elliot Island, near Agnes Water, QLD, January 2016]

Breeding information

Breeding season: Aug - Dec Eggs: 5 - 8 Incubation period: 18 - 19 days Fledging age: precocial

Depending on geographic latitude and conditions, Buff-banded Rails can in principle breed any time of the year; the period indicated in the table above is the core breeding season. In inland areas their breeding cycle will be dominated by rainfall events, in the tropical North it will be during the dry season.

Nest building: ? Incubation: Female & male Dependent care: Female & male

Nest

"bungobittah", "malunna" = nest [Aboriginal]

Type: Basket Material: Reeds, grass stems Height above ground: N/A

Buff-banded Rail hatchling (photo courtesy of B. Hensen)
[Lover's Bay, Lord Howe Island, November 2014]

Eggs

"boyanga", "booyanga", "derinya", "dirandil", "koomura", "ngampu", "nooluk", "pateena" = Egg; "dirundirri" = eggs [Aboriginal]; "gawu" = eggs [gamilaraay]

Size: 36 x 28 mm Colour: Creamy, with mid- to dark-brown speckles Shape: Oval

Behaviour

Buff-banded Rails are secretive birds that tend to stay in dense cover, especially in broad daylight. It is often easier to find them in overcast and/or rainy conditions, because in bad light they will occasionally venture into more open country. However, they are not as secretive as Lewin's Rails.

Buff-banded Rails can sometimes appear in unexpected places - this one is foraging by the side of a gravel road (photo courtesy of R. Plumtree)
[Ensay South, East Gippsland, VIC, December 2015]

Food, Diet

Buff-banded Rails are omnivores that feed primarily on small animals, seeds and plant material. They also scavenge, both for carrion and rubbish.

This Buff-banded Rail has found a small meal (photo courtesy of A. Ross-Taylor)
[Broadbeach, Gold Coast, QLD, March 2014]

These pages are largely based on our own observations and those of our contributors. The structure of these bird pages is explained HERE. For more salient facts on any bird species please refer to a field guide.

Would you like to contribute photos or sound recordings to this site?
If interested, please CLICK HERE. Credits to contributors are given HERE.