Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Virginia Rail

For my World Bird Wednesday and Nature Notes I have some shots of the Virginia Rail.

I mentioned my lifer the Virginia Rail on my post below with all the other birds I saw while touring Poplar Island, Md. But now I am doing a separate post describing the Virginia Rail and showing more of its habitat. The adult has chestnut colored wings, a long bill, and a gray face. The female can lay 5 to 13 eggs on a raised bed of cattails and other plants. Both parents care for the chicks and they are able to fly in less than a month. The rails chicks are black in color.  


Below, one of the Virginia Rails walked out onto the road where we were standing. All twenty five of us stopped and stood still. We were not sure what the rail was going to do and then it stopped right near one of the birders legs. At least on my photo it looks close. As soon as it noticed all of us watching, it turned tail and ran back into the brush. It did not go far because that was were the chicks were.



On this shot below we watched as the Virginia Rail and some of its chicks ran back and forth. The Virginia Rail breeds in upland freshwater marshes and coastal salt marshes. To avoid predators this species can dive underwater propelled by its wings.  They eat insects and aquatics animals.

I was not able to get any shots of the chicks, they were quick. But I think I saw both adults.



I was thrilled to see my new lifer the Virginia Rail!  Rails in general are very secretive birds more often heard than seen. The are fairly common dispite the continuing loss of their habitat. I am hoping they will do well on Poplar Island.

To see more wonderful photos and pretty birds please make sure to visit Springman's World Bird Wednesday  and Michelle's Nature Notes.  thanks to both Springman and Michelle for hosting these great memes.

Also, thanks again for visiting my blog and post. I hope enjoy my Virginia Rail. Happy Birding and I hope the rest of your week is great. 

37 comments:

TexWisGirl said...

wow! what a great sighting! nothing more well-known about this bird than how elusive and shy it is! good for you for being able to catch it on camera!

Sue said...

I can imagine that Rails thoughts when it realized 25 pairs of eyes were staring at it--LOL!

Calling Ravens said...

Congratulations Eileen!!! What a thrill. I keep trying to get a photo of the baby quail...they are just too fast, so I can totally empathize with not getting the baby rail-lol!
Still..great just to see them "in person!"
meggs.xx

NatureFootstep said...

We have a similar oen here. And like yours it is a "hard to get" bird. Great to see your shots. :)

Andrew said...

A beautiful bird to see never mind capture an imgage of...
A lovely post.

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

That's wonderful that you were able to get such good pictures of this elusive bird! Congrats!

holdingmoments said...

Great post, and captures Eileen.

Gary said...

Great story!! Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

Fjällripan said...

Great captures. It is allways funny to see a new bird. So sweet with the little chicken!

Diane Writes said...

Hello Eileen! Great shots, thank you for sharing them. As I have said, I live in the city and pictures about nature and greenery really make me happy :)

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Congrats, Eileen.. It's such a joy when we see a 'lifer' like you did. Love see Virginia Rail...
Hugs,
Betsy

AVCr8teur said...

I am glad you got to see and take a great photo of the stealthy bird. I always admire people who know their birds.

Larry said...

Great shots of the Virginia Rail Eileen! Congrats on the lifer, they are indeed secretive. I have still never seen one of their chicks. I'm sure they stay in the reeds for the most part.

mick said...

Great sighting and very good to get such close photos of such a secretive bird.

Life Ramblings said...

a great encounter with such beautiful bird.

Bob Bushell said...

A brilliant Rail, one bird I can't shoot, I don't seem to have my camera in position.

diane b said...

How exciting for you. He is a charming colour.

Abraham Lincoln said...

Nice looking photos. I have never seen one of these before.

joo said...

Lovely post, and great shots:)
Hugs
Joo:)

Indrani said...

You got excellent shots.

Tina said...

Great captures :)

missing moments said...

I've never seen these guys! What a lucky break to capture them!

Jedediah said...

Congrats on the life bird :) I giggled at the thought of the bird wandering onto the road, completely missing the 25 birders. It's probably like stepping onto your balcony in the morning (hopefully dressed) and then noticing the construction workers outside.

Jean said...

Congrats on your addition to your Life List!
What a neat experience to share.

EG Wow said...

This is bird I've never heard of before. I guess they must be very secretive indeed!

Carver said...

Great post and what fun to see them through your photographs.

Denise said...

Lovely post, I enjoyed learning about the Rail. Thanks Eileen.

Tammy said...

Congratulations! Great sighting.

bailey-road.com said...

Congratulations on the sighting! Great job getting photos of this hard-to-get bird!

shirley said...

Your post is full of excitement and I can't imagine how wonderful it felt to observe these elusive birds in person.
I hope you have a great day!

Springman said...

Congratulations on the lifer, that's always a big deal! Gosh, the rail seems like a really hard bird to capture. Those marshes must be a blast to rummage around in. Enjoy yourself and bring us back some more lifers!

Elaine said...

What a surprise for the Rail! At least you had the presence of mind to get that camera going and get a few shots of the elusive critter.

Arija said...

It si so well camouflaged I am surprise you spotted it. It must have wonder at the large audience though.

Icy BC said...

Beautiful photos of the bird, and thank you for bringing this information back to share.

Hilke Breder said...

Great post, Eileen! I have yet to see one. Love your photos!

Rambling Woods said...

Congrats on the lifer...I enjoyed getting to see the bird ....

SandyCarlson said...

These are wonderful pictures, Eileen!