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Laterallus melanophaius

Rufous-sided Crake

  • Order: Gruiformes
  • Family: Rallidae
  • Polytypic 2 Subspecies

Authors: Schulenberg, Thomas S

Laterallus melanophaius

Ubatuba, São Paulo, Brazil; 7 June 2012 © Joao Quental

The Rufous-sided Crake is a small, slender rail whose range encompasses most of the South American continent. Easily confused with other species in its genus, the Rufous-sided Crake is only distinguishable by subtle plumage markings and vocalizations. A relatively uncommon and inconspicuous inhabitant of marshes, wet meadows, and grasslands, the Rufous-sided Crake eats insects, other invertebrates, and occasionally seeds. No migratory movements of the Rufous-sided Crake have been recorded, but due to its secretive nature, not much is known about its overall life history.

Recommended Citation

Schulenberg, Thomas S. 2012. Rufous-sided Crake (Laterallus melanophaius), Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Ithaca: Cornell Lab of Ornithology; retrieved from Neotropical Birds Online:

This map is based on the maps available from the NatureServe InfoNatura website. The data for these maps are provided by NatureServe in collaboration with Robert Ridgely, James Zook, The Nature Conservancy - Migratory Bird Program, Conservation International - CABS, World Wildlife Fund - US, and Environment Canada - WILDSPACE.

  • Migration/Movement:Resident (nonmigratory)
  • Primary Habitat:Freshwater marshes
  • Foraging Strata:Terrestrial
  • Foraging Behavior:Peck
  • Diet:Small vertebrates and large arthropods
  • Sociality:Solitary
  • Mating System:Monogamy
  • Nest Form:Spherical
  • Clutch: 4 - 5
  • IUCN Status:Least Concern