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Rallidae

Description

The rails, or Rallidae, are a large cosmopolitan family of small- to medium-sized, ground-living birds. The family exhibits considerable diversity and includes the crakes, coots, and gallinules. Many species are associated with wetlands, although the family is found in every terrestrial habitat except dry deserts, polar regions, and alpine areas above the snow line. Members of the Rallidae occur on every continent except Antarctica. Numerous island species are known. The most common rail habitats are marshland and dense forest. They are especially fond of dense vegetation.


Source Data
SourceIDLink
Global Biodiversity Information Facility ID (GBIF)9342https://www.gbif.org/species/9342
PaleoBioDB ID (PBDB)39513https://paleobiodb.org/classic/checkTaxonInfo?taxon_no=39513
Rankfamily
Taxonomy (GBIF,PBDB)Life : Animalia : Chordata : Aves : Gruiformes : Rallidae
Taxonomic Status (GBIF)accepted
Classification
(PBDB,GBIF)
RankNameAuthor
-Eukaryota
-OpisthokontaCavalier-Smith 1987
kingdomAnimalia
-TriploblasticaLankester 1877
-NephrozoaJondelius et al. 2002
-DeuterostomiaGrobben 1908
phylumChordataHaeckel 1847
subphylumVertebrataLamarck 1801
superclassGnathostomataGegenbauer 1874
-Osteichthyes
-SarcopterygiiRomer 1955
subclassDipnotetrapodomorpha
subclassTetrapodomorpha
-Tetrapoda
-ReptiliomorphaSäve-Söderbergh 1934
-AnthracosauriaSäve-Söderbergh 1934
-Batrachosauria
-Cotylosauria
-AmniotaHaeckel 1866
-SauropsidaHuxley 1864
classReptiliaLaurenti 1768
subclassEureptilia
-RomeriidaGauthier et al. 1988
-Diapsida
-Eosuchia
-NeodiapsidaBenton 1985
-SauriaGauthier 1984
-Archosauromorpha
-CrocopodaEzcurra 2016
-ArchosauriformesGauthier 1986
-EucrocopodaEzcurra 2016
-Archosauria
informalAvemetatarsaliaBenton 1999
-OrnithodiraGauthier 1986
-DinosauromorphaBenton 1985
-DinosauriformesNovas 1992
-Dinosauria
-Saurischia
-Theropoda
-NeotheropodaBakker 1986
-AverostraPaul 2002
-TetanuraeGauthier 1986
orderAvetheropodaPaul 1988
suborderCoelurosauriaHuene 1914
-ManiraptoraGauthier 1986
-ParavesSereno 1997
classAvesLinnaeus 1758
-PygostyliaChiappe 2002
-OrnithothoracesChiappe and Calvo 1994
-OrnithuromorphaChiappe et al. 1999
subclassOrnithuraeHaeckel 1866
subclassNeornithesGadow 1893
-Neognathae
-NeoavesSibley et al. 1988
-TerrestrornithesLivezey and Zusi 2007
-Telmatorae
superorderCharadriimorphaeHuxley 1867
orderGruiformesBonaparte 1854
familyRallidaeVigors 1825
Common Namerail
Scientific NameRallidae
Opinions (PBDB)
NameRankOpinionEvidenceAuthor
Rallidaefamilybelongs to Gruiformesstated with evidenceZittel, 1890
Rallidaefamilybelongs to Gruioideastated without evidenceHay, 1902
Rallidaefamilybelongs to Gruiformesstated without evidenceJaekel, 1911
Rallidaefamilybelongs to Ralliformesstated without evidenceLambrecht, 1933
Rallidaefamilybelongs to Rallistated without evidenceBrunet, 1970
Rallidaefamilybelongs to Gruiformesstated without evidenceOlson, 1975
Rallidaefamilybelongs to RalliimpliedCarroll, 1988
Rallidaefamilybelongs to Gruiformesstated with evidenceOlson and James, 1991
Rallidaefamilybelongs to Gruiformesstated without evidenceBaird, 1992
Rallidaefamilybelongs to Ralliformesstated with evidenceLivezey and Zusi, 2007
Rallidaefamilybelongs to Gruiformesstated without evidencedel Hoyo et al., 2014
Rallidaefamilybelongs to Gruiformesstated with evidenceClements et al., 2017
Status (PBDB)extant
Taxon Size (PBDB)205
Extant Size (PBDB)80 (39%)
First Recorded Appearance61.7 - 58.7 Ma
Paleocene
Environmentterrestrial (based on Theropoda)
Motilityactively mobile (based on Theropoda)
Dietcarnivore (based on Coelurosauria)
Reproductionoviparous, dispersal=direct/internal,mobile (based on Theropoda)
Ontogenyaccretion,modification of parts (based on Theropoda)
Taphonomyhydroxylapatite,compact or dense (based on Theropoda)
Primary Reference (PBDB)R. L. Carroll. 1988. Vertebrate Paleontology and Evolution
Common Name(s) Waterhens, Coots, Foulques, Gallinules, Rails, Râles, Rail, Rails, Crakes, Gallinules, Moorhens And Coots, Rallar, Rallen, Riksefamilien, Rallen, Koeten En Waterhoentjes, Rails, Crakes And Coots, Rallar Och Sumphöns, Rails, Coots
Wikipediahttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rallidae

External Images

Fossil Distribution

Subtaxa

NameStatusCommon Name(s)Fossil OccurrencesOldestYoungest
Fulicinae
subfamily
listed (PBDB)248.6 Ma
Eocene
13.6 Ma
Miocene
Gallinulinae
subfamily
listed (PBDB)556.0 Ma
Paleocene
0 Ma
Extant
Himantornithinae
subfamily
listed (PBDB)0 Ma
Extant
Rallinae
subfamily
listed (PBDB)1033.9 Ma
Oligocene
0 Ma
Extant
Sarothrurinae
subfamily
listed (PBDB)0 Ma
Extant
Aenigmatolimnas
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Amaurolimnas
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Amaurornis
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
110.13 Ma
Pleistocene
0 Ma
Extant
Anurolimnas
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Aphanapteryx
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
40.01 Ma
Pleistocene
0.01 Ma
Pleistocene
Aphanocrex
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
60.13 Ma
Pleistocene
0.01 Ma
Pleistocene
Aramides
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
10.13 Ma
Pleistocene
0 Ma
Extant
Aramidopsis
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Atlantisia
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
0 Ma
Extant
Baselrallus
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Belgirallus
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
433.9 Ma
Oligocene
33.9 Ma
Oligocene
Canirallus
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Capellirallus
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
Coturnicops
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
30.30 Ma
Pleistocene
0 Ma
Extant
Creccoides
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
Creciscus
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Crex
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
98.70 Ma
Miocene
0 Ma
Extant
Cyanolimnas
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Diaphorapteryx
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
Great Chatham Island Rail50.01 Ma
Pleistocene
0.01 Ma
Pleistocene
Dryolimnas
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
50.13 Ma
Pleistocene
0 Ma
Extant
Eocrex
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
155.8 Ma
Eocene
55.8 Ma
Eocene
Erythromachus
genus
doubtful (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
30.01 Ma
Pleistocene
0.01 Ma
Pleistocene
Eulabeornis
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
Chestnut Rail
Euryonotus
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
Fulica
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
7623.0 Ma
Miocene
0 Ma
Extant
Gallicrex
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Gallinula
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
Moorhen274.90 Ma
Pliocene
0 Ma
Extant
Gallirallus
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
1090.78 Ma
Pleistocene
0 Ma
Extant
Gymnocrex
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
Rails0 Ma
Extant
Gypsornis
genus
listed (PBDB)138.0 Ma
Eocene
38.0 Ma
Eocene
Habroptila
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Hapalocrex
genus
doubtful (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
20.13 Ma
Pleistocene
0 Ma
Extant
Himantornis
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
Nkulengu Rails0 Ma
Extant
Hovacrex
genus
doubtful (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
10.13 Ma
Pleistocene
0.13 Ma
Pleistocene
Hypotaenidia
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Ibidopsis
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
Laterallus
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
54.90 Ma
Pliocene
0 Ma
Extant
Latipons
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
547.8 Ma
Eocene
41.3 Ma
Eocene
Lewinia
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
20.13 Ma
Pleistocene
0 Ma
Extant
Ludiortyx
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
256.0 Ma
Paleocene
38.0 Ma
Eocene
Megacrex
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Micropygia
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Microtribonyx
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
Miofulica
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
Miorallus
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
111.1 Ma
Miocene
11.1 Ma
Miocene
Mundia
genus
doubtful (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
40.01 Ma
Pleistocene
0.01 Ma
Pleistocene
Neocrex
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Nesoclopeus
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
40.01 Ma
Pleistocene
0 Ma
Extant
Nesolimnas
genus
listed (PBDB)
Nesotrochis
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
Cave-rail10.01 Ma
Pleistocene
0.01 Ma
Pleistocene
Ortygis
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Ortygonax
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Palaeoaramides
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
Palaeocrex
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
137.2 Ma
Eocene
37.2 Ma
Eocene
Palaeolimnas
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
Palaeorallus
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
155.8 Ma
Eocene
55.8 Ma
Eocene
Paragallinula
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Paraortygometra
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
233.9 Ma
Oligocene
16.0 Ma
Miocene
Pararallus
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
Pardirallus
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
0 Ma
Extant
Parvirallus
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
247.8 Ma
Eocene
41.3 Ma
Eocene
Pleistorallus
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
12.59 Ma
Pleistocene
2.59 Ma
Pleistocene
Porphyrio
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
544.90 Ma
Pliocene
0 Ma
Extant
Porzana
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
6813.7 Ma
Miocene
0 Ma
Extant
Quercyrallus
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
138.0 Ma
Eocene
38.0 Ma
Eocene
Rallicrex
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
Rallina
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
30.13 Ma
Pleistocene
0 Ma
Extant
Rallus
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
5713.7 Ma
Miocene
0 Ma
Extant
Rougetius
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Sarothrura
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Tribonyx
genus
listed (PBDB)72.59 Ma
Pleistocene
0 Ma
Extant
Vitirallus
genus
doubtful (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
30.13 Ma
Pleistocene
0.01 Ma
Pleistocene
Wanshuina
genus
accepted (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
161.7 Ma
Paleocene
61.7 Ma
Paleocene
Youngornis
genus
doubtful (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
116.0 Ma
Miocene
16.0 Ma
Miocene
Zapornia
genus
accepted (GBIF)No associated record in PBDB
Zapornia
genus
doubtful (GBIF)
listed (PBDB)
370.13 Ma
Pleistocene
0 Ma
Extant

Synonymy List

YearName and Author
1825Rallidae Vigors
1890Rallidae Zittel p. 846
1902Rallidae Hay p. 528
1911Rallidae Jaekel p. 175
1933Rallidae Lambrecht p. 461
1933Rallidae Wetmore p. 12
1967Rallidae Brodkorb p. 112
1970Rallidae Brunet p. 27
1975Rallidae Olson p. 24
1982Rallidae Olson and James p. 35
1987Rallidae Rasmussen et al. p. 5
YearName and Author
1988Rallidae Carroll
1991Rallidae Olson and James p. 49
1992Rallidae Baird p. 26
1992Rallidae Emslie p. 260
2001Rallidae Olson and Rasmussen p. 292
2004Rallidae Mourer-Chauviré et al. p. 309
2007Rallidae Livezey and Zusi p. 92
2007Rallidae Worthy et al. p. 21
2014Rallidae del Hoyo et al.
2017Rallidae Clements et al.

References

Carroll R. L. (1988) , Vertebrate Paleontology and Evolution, 1-698
Zittel K. A. v. , Handbuch der Palaeontologie. I. Abteilung Paleozoologie. III. Band. Vertebrata (Pisces, Amphibia, Reptilia, Aves) [Handbook of Paleontology. Division I. Paleozoology. Volume III. Vertebrata (Pisces, Amphibia, Reptilia, Aves)], xii-900
Hay O. P. (1902) , Bibliography and Catalogue of the Fossil Vertebrata of North America. Bulletin of the United States Geological Survey 179, 1-868
Jaekel O. (1911) , Die Wirbeltiere. Eine Übersicht über die Fossilen und Lebenden Formen [The Vertebrates. An Overview of the Fossil and Living Forms], viii-252
Lambrecht K. (1933) Handbuch der Palaeornithologie, 1-1024
Wetmore A. (1933) Pliocene bird remains from Idaho, Smithsonian Miscellaneous Collections 87 20, 1-12
Brodkorb P. (1967) Catalogue of fossil birds: Part 3 (Ralliformes, Ichthyornithiformes, Charadriiformes), Bulletin of the Florida State Museum, Biological Sciences 11 3, 99-220
Brunet J. (1970) Oiseaux de l'Éocène supérieur du bassin de Paris, Annales de Paléontologie. Vertébrés 56, 3-57
Olson S. L. (1975) Paleornithology of St. Helena Island, South Atlantic Ocean, Smithsonian Contributions to Paleobiology 23, 1-49
Olson S. L., James H. F. (1982) Prodromus of the fossil avifauna of the Hawaiian Islands, Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology 365, 1-59
Rasmussen D. T., Olson S. L., et al (1987) Fossil Birds from the Oligocene Jebel Qatrani Formation, Fayum Province, Egypt, Smithsonian Contributions to Paleobiology 62, 1-20
Olson S. L., James H. F. (1991) Descriptions of Thirty-Two New Species of Birds from the Hawaiian Islands: Part I. Non-Passeriformes, Ornithological Monographs 45, 1-88
Baird R. F. (1992) Fossil avian assemblage of Pitfall Origin from Holocene sediments in Amphitheatre Cave (G-2), South-western Victoria, Australia, Records of the Australian Museum 44, 21-44
Emslie S. D. (1992) Two new late Blancan avifaunas from Florida and the extinction of wetland birds in the Plio-Pleistocene, Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, Science Series 36, 249-269
Olson S. L., Rasmussen P. C. (2001) Miocene and Pliocene birds from the Lee Creek Mine, North Carolina, Smithsonian Contributions to Paleobiology 90, 233-365
Mourer-Chauviré C., Berthet D., et al (2004)
Livezey B. C., Zusi R. L. (2007) Higher-order phylogeny of modern birds (Theropoda, Aves: Neornithes) based on comparative anatomy. II. Analysis and discussion, Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 149 1, 1-95
Worthy T. H., Tennyson A. J. D., et al (2007) Miocene waterfowl and other birds from central Otago, New Zealand, Journal of Systematic Palaeontology 5 1, 1-39
del Hoyo J., Collar N. J., et al (2014) HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Volume 1: Non-passerines, 1-904
Clements J. F., Schulenberg T. S., et al (2017) , The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2017
Banks, R. C., R. W. McDiarmid, A. L. Gardner, and W. C. Starnes, 2003: null. Checklist of Vertebrates of the United States, the U.S. Territories, and Canada. - via Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS)
Dickinson, Edward C., ed., 2003: null. The Howard and Moore Complete Checklist of the Birds of the World, 3rd edition. 1039. - via Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS)
Banks, R. C., R. W. McDiarmid, and A. L. Gardner, 1987: Checklist of Vertebrates of the United States, the U.S. Territories, and Canada. Resource Publication, no. 166. 79. - via Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS)
Benton, M.J. (ed). (1993). The Fossil Record 2. Chapman & Hall, London, 845 pp. - via The Interim Register of Marine and Nonmarine Genera
Parker, S.P. (ed). (1982). Synopsis and Classification of Living Organisms. McGraw-Hill, New York. 2 volumes. - via The Interim Register of Marine and Nonmarine Genera
Jirle, M. (2015) Officiella svenska namn på alla världens fågelfamiljer – Taxonomikommittén SOF/BirdLife Sverige – version 10 (11 februari 2015. ). - via Dyntaxa. Svensk taxonomisk databas
Murariu, D. (2010) Systematic list of the Romanian vertebrate fauna. Travaux du Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle “Grigore Antipa” LIII: 377–411 - via Dyntaxa. Svensk taxonomisk databas
Gill, D. (eds.) (2015) IOC World Bird List (v 5.1). doi : 10.14344/IOC.ML.5.1. Online: http://www.worldbirdnames.org/ - via Dyntaxa. Svensk taxonomisk databas
Murariu, D. (2010) Systematic list of the Romanian vertebrate fauna. Travaux du Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle “Grigore Antipa” LIII: 377–411 - via Dyntaxa. Svensk taxonomisk databas
Larsson, L., Ekström, G., Larsson, E. & Gandemo, M. (2007) Birds of the World, 2:a uppl. - via Dyntaxa. Svensk taxonomisk databas
Data courtesy of: PBDB: The Paleobiology Database, Creative Commons CC-BY licenced. , GBIF: the Global Biodiversity Information Facility, various licences, iDigBio, various licences, and EOL: The Encyclopedia of Life (Open Data Public Domain). Because fossils are made of minerals too!
Data courtesy of: PBDB: The Paleobiology Database, Creative Commons CC-BY licenced. , GBIF: the Global Biodiversity Information Facility, various licences, iDigBio, various licences, and EOL: The Encyclopedia of Life (Open Data Public Domain). Because fossils are made of minerals too!
 
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