Water Rail Research Paper

Submitted By kkkewl
Words: 1111
Pages: 5

The Water Rail is a bird of the rail family found across Europe, Asia and North Africa. Northern and eastern populations are migratory, but this species is a permanent resident in the warmer parts of its breeding range. It breeds in reed beds and other marshy sites with tall, dense vegetation, building its nest a little above the water level from whatever plants are available nearby. The adult is 23–28 cm (9–11 in) long, and, like other rails, has a body that is flattened laterally to allow it easier passage through reed beds. It has mainly brown upperparts and blue-grey underparts, black barring on the flanks, long toes, a short tail and a long reddish bill. The off-white, blotched eggs are incubated mainly by the female, and the precocial downy chicks hatch in 19–22 days. Water Rails are omnivorous, although they feed mainly on animals. They are territorial even after breeding, and will aggressively defend feeding areas in winter. These rails are vulnerable to flooding or freezing conditions, loss of habitat and predation by mammals (such as the American mink) and large birds, but overall the species' huge range and large numbers mean that it is not considered to be threatened. (Full article...)
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