Age of a Virginia Rail Chick
Outdoor Ontario

Age of a Virginia Rail Chick

Dinusaur

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I took the following photo of an adult Virginia Rail together with one of her three chicks that I saw in Cranberry Marsh in Whitby on August 3rd. I started wondering if there's a way to tell the age of the chick from its external characteristics. A quick internet search produced a 1987 paper that has documented the ageing of rail and sora chicks. Quite an interesting read. Anyway, based on the article, the black lower bill with white tip, dark olive green iris and the appearance of alar feather tracts etc. put this chick to be about three weeks old. By one month the lower bill would be totally black; interesting, isn't it?

[attachment=0:13dufsdj]D23_8829b_01.JPG[/attachment:13dufsdj]
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 pm by Guest »


Shortsighted

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Useful bit of esoterica for those lucky enough to spot a chick.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 pm by Guest »


Ally

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Quote from: "Dinusaur"
I took the following photo of an adult Virginia Rail together with one of her three chicks that I saw in Cranberry Marsh in Whitby on August 3rd. I started wondering if there's a way to tell the age of the chick from its external characteristics. A quick internet search produced a 1987 paper that has documented the ageing of rail and sora chicks. Quite an interesting read. Anyway, based on the article, the black lower bill with white tip, dark olive green iris and the appearance of alar feather tracts etc. put this chick to be about three weeks old. By one month the lower bill would be totally black; interesting, isn't it?

[attachment=0:3jodwvif]D23_8829b_01.JPG[/attachment:3jodwvif]
Very interesting. Somehow I almost didn't see the black chick on your photo. Maybe black is a good strategy too for the young.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 pm by Guest »