Cranes, Rails and Allies

Rails - Family Rallidae

Yellow Rail Coturnicops noveboracensis. Occasional in winter, spring, and fall mostly in Inland Coastal Plain and Gulf Coast regions. Found in drier, grassy portions of marshes, open edges of wet fields, and, rarely, in salt marshes. HIGH CONSERVATION CONCERN.

Black Rail Laterallus jamaicensis. Possible breeder. Rare in spring and occasional in other seasons in Gulf Coast region. Found in coastal marshes. HIGH CONSERVATION CONCERN.

Clapper Rail Rallus longirostris. Breeder. Common in all seasons in Gulf Coast region. Found in salt water and brackish marshes around the mouths of coastal rivers and creeks. MODERATE CONSERVATION CONCERN.

King Rail Rallus elegans. Breeder. Uncommon in all seasons in Gulf Coast regions and Inland Coastal Plain regions. In Mountain and Tennessee Valley regions, rare to uncommon in spring, summer, and fall. Found in brackish water, freshwater, and, less often, in saltwater marshes. MODERATE CONSERVATION CONCERN.

Virginia Rail Rallus limicola. Historical breeder. Uncommon in winter, and uncommon to rare in spring and fall in Inland Coastal Plain and Gulf Coast regions. In Mountain and Tennessee Valley regions, rare in winter, spring, and fall. Found in brackish water, freshwater, and less often salt water marshes. Low Conservation Concern.  

Sora Porzana carolina. Fairly common in winter, spring, and fall in Gulf Coast region. In Mountain and Inland Coastal Plain regions, uncommon in winter and uncommon to rare in spring and fall. In Tennessee Valley region, uncommon to rare in spring and fall. Found in freshwater and saltwater marshes, and wet grassy fields. Low Conservation Concern.

Purple Gallinule Porphyrio martinica. Breeder. Uncommon in summer and uncommon to rare in spring and fall in Inland Coastal Plain and Gulf Coast regions. Occasional in spring in Mountain and Tennessee Valley regions. Found in freshwater marshes, swamps, and ponds. MODERATE CONSERVATION CONCERN.

Common Moorhen Gallinula chloropus. Breeder. Fairly common in spring, summer, and fall, and uncommon in winter in Gulf Coast region. In Inland Coastal Plain, uncommon in summer and uncommon to rare in spring and fall. In Tennessee Valley and Mountain regions, rare in spring, summer, and fall. Found in freshwater marshes, swamps, and ponds. Low Conservation Concern.

American Coot Fulica americana. Occasional breeder. Common in winter, common to uncommon in spring and fall, and rare in summer in all regions. Found on rivers, ponds, lakes, and in swamp and delta areas. Low Conservation Concern.

Limpkins­ - Family Aramidae

Limpkin Aramus guarauna. Accidental.

Cranes - Family Gruidae

Sandhill Crane Grus canadensis. Historical breeder. Uncommon in winter and rare in spring and fall in Gulf Coast region. In other regions, uncommon to rare in winter, early spring, and fall. Found in open grasslands, marshes, and corn fields. Mississippi subspecies (G. c. pulla), which is the most likely to breed in Alabama, listed as endangered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. MODERATE CONSERVATION CONCERN.

Whooping Crane Grus americana. Accidental. Hypothetical.

References Cited:

Mirarchi. Ralph E., ed. 2004. Alabama Wildlife, Volume One.  A Checklist of Vertebrates and Selected Invertebrates: Aquatic Mollusks, Fishes, Amphibians, Reptiles, Birds and Mammals.  The University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa, AL. 209 pp.

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