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Austral Rail - BirdForum Opus

Photo by Fritz73
Gdor. Gregores, Santa Cruz, Argentina, 2001
Rallus antarcticus


20 cm.

  • Buff-brown upperparts with black streaks
  • Pale slaty underparts
  • Sides of breast have a brown wash
  • Lower belly and vent is black with white barring
  • White undertail-coverts
  • Red iris
  • Dusky red bill
  • Pinkish-red legs.


South America: found in Chile and Argentina to Tierra del Fuego. In Chile, was found to the Santiago area in the past, but has recently been rediscovered in southernmost end of the country.


This species was previously thought to be a part of Bogota Rail. This is a monotypic species[1].


Steppe wetlands with large patches of tall, dense rushbeds, and open areas with lush green grass, swamps, freshwater lakes, and freshwater marshes.


Shy and difficult to see.


Recording by NJLarsen at Torres del Paine, Chile, December 2009: each kwaui sound is preceded by a tapping sound that seemingly also came from this bird; near the end and intermittently is heard another unknown bird.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, B.L. Sullivan, C. L. Wood, and D. Roberson. 2012. The eBird/Clements Checklist of Birds of the World. 6th ed., with updates to October 2012. Ithaca: Cornell Univ. Press. ISBN 978-0801445019. Spreadsheet available at http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/downloadable-clements-checklist
  2. BirdLife International
  3. Alvaro Jaramillo. 2003. Birds of Chile. Princeton Field Guides. ISBN 0-691-11740-3

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