Order: Gruiformes

Family: Rallidae

Scientific name: Porzana fusca, Linnaeus, 1766

IUCN Red list status-Least Concern

Did you know?

  1. Ruddy-breasted Crake got the name due to the crimson-chestnut colour (ruddy colour) in the breast.


The Ruddy-breasted Crake is a small bird measuring 21 to 23 cms in length and 50-65 Gms in weight. Both the male and female look similar, but the female is generally paler and has white throat. They have brown back and chestnut head and under parts, with white barring on the under tail. The bill is grey and eyes are red. The legs and toes are long and reddish in colour. Juveniles are dark brown with some white spotting.


The Ruddy-breasted Crake feed on small fish, invertebrates, aquatic insects, terrestrial insects, worms and molluscs. They also feed on vegetable matters like seeds, grass, shoots and berries. They probe in mud or shallow water and also pick up food by sight. They use their strong bill to break the hard shells of snails. The forage time is mainly early morning and late afternoon and it is done solitarily and rarely in pairs or groups.


The habitat of Ruddy-breasted Crake is reed beds, freshwater, brackish or saline wetlands, marshes, swamps, river banks, canals, flooded meadows, irrigated lands and flooded agricultural fields. In India it is distributed throughout the union in the above areas. It is also seen in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and as winter visitor in Pakistan.

Reproductive Behaviour

The breeding season of Ruddy-breasted Crake is from June to August. The nest is a raised platform of plant material. They are very territorial during that time. Normally 6 to 9 eggs are laid. The incubation of 20-21 days and young ones care is shared by both parent birds.


The call is a loud “tewk” sound.

Related Species and Sub Species

  • Spotted Crake (Porzana porzana).
  • Baillon’s Crake (Porzana pusilla).
  • Little Crake (Porzana parva).
  • Porzana fusca erythrothorax of Russia, China, Korea and Japan.
  • Porzana fusca zeylonica of West India and Sri Lanka
  • Porzana fusca fusca of Philippines, Malay Peninsula and Indonesia.

Migratory Behaviour

Resident but Uncommon.