Buff-banded Rails

Rails

Buff-banded Rail, Gallirallus philippensis


Buff-banded RailThe Buff-banded Rail, Gallirallus philippensis is also known as Banded Rail or Moho-pereru (Māori).


Distribution / Range

The Buff-banded Rail occurs throughout much of Australasia and the south-west Pacific region, including the Philippines, New Guinea, Australia, New Zealand and numerous smaller island.

It utilises a range of moist or wetland habitats with low, dense vegetation for cover.

This species is usually quite shy but may become very confiding and even bold in some areas.


Recognized Subspecies and Ranges

  • Gallirallus philippensis philippensis (Linnaeus, 1766) Nominate Race - Philippines, Sulawesi, Buru and Sunda Islands
  • Gallirallus philippensis admiralitatis (Stresemann, 1929) - Admiralty Islands
  • Gallirallus philippensis anachoretae (Mayr, 1949) - Anchorite Islands, PNG
  • Gallirallus philippensis andrewsi (Mathews, 1911) - Cocos Buff-banded Rail, endemic to the Cocos (Keeling) Islands, Endangered
  • Gallirallus philippensis assimilis (G. R. Gray, 1843) - New Zealand
  • Gallirallus philippensis chlandleri - northern Sulawesi
  • Gallirallus philippensis christophori (Mayr, 1938) - Solomon Islands
  • Gallirallus philippensis dieffenbachi - endemic to the Chatham Islands, Extinct
  • Gallirallus philippensis ecaudatus (J. F. Miller, 1783) - Southwestern Pacific
  • Gallirallus philippensis goodsoni (Mathews, 1911) - Samoa and Niue Islands
  • Gallirallus philippensis lacustris (Mayr, 1938) - New Guinea
  • Gallirallus philippensis lesouefi (Mathews, 1911) - New Hanover, Tabar and Tanga Islands, possibly New Ireland
  • Gallirallus philippensis macquariensis (Hutton, 1879) - Macquarie Island Rail, endemic to Macquarie Island, Extinct
  • Gallirallus philippensis mellori (Mathews, 1912) - Tasmania and mainland Australia, Least Concern
  • Gallirallus philippensis meyeri (Hartert, 1930) - Witu Island, PNG
  • Gallirallus philippensis pelewensis (Mayr, 1933) - Palau
  • Gallirallus philippensis praedo (Mayr, 1949) - Skoki Island, Admiralty Islands
  • Gallirallus philippensis randi (Mayr and Gilliard, 1951)
  • Gallirallus philippensis reductus (Mayr, 1938) - northern New Guinea
  • Gallirallus philippensis sethsmithi (Mathews, 1911) - Vanuatu, Fiji
  • Gallirallus philippensis swindellsi (Mathews, 1911) - New Caledonia and Loyalty Islands
  • Gallirallus philippensis tounelieri (Schodde and Naurois, 1982) - Coral Sea Islands
  • Gallirallus philippensis wahgiensis (Mayr and Gilliard, 1951) - central highlands of New Guinea
  • Gallirallus philippensis wilkinsoni (Mathews, 1911) - Flores
  • Gallirallus philippensis xerophilus (Bemmel and Hoogerwerf, 1940) - Indonesia
  • Gallirallus philippensis yorki - Moluccas, western and southern New Guinea

Buff-banded Rail, Gallirallus philippensis


Buff-banded Rail, East Australian race G. p. melloriDescription

The Buff-handed Rail is about the size of a domestic chicken.

The upper plumage is mostly brown, with finely banded black and white underparts. It has white eyebrows, chestnut band running from the bill round the nape, with a buff band on the chest.


Diet / Feeding

The Buff-banded Rail feeds on a range of terrestrial invertebtrates and small vertebrates, seeds, fallen fruit and other vegetable matter, as well as carrion.


Breeding / Nesting

Its nest is usually situated in dense grassy or reddy vegetation close to water. The clutch usually consists of 5 - 8 eggs.


Buff-banded Rail, Gallirallus philippensis

Species Research by Sibylle Johnson

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