Family Rails, Gallinules, Coots (Rallidae)

Critically Endangered

New Caledonian Rail (Gallirallus lafresnayanus)


French: Râle de Lafresnaye German: Pelzralle Spanish: Rascón de Nueva Caledonia

Gallirallus Lafresnayanus

J. P. Verreaux and Des Murs

, 1860,

New Caledonia


Sometimes placed in genus Tricholimnas or in Rallus. Monotypic.


New Caledonia (not recorded since 1890; possibly extinct).

Descriptive notes

45–48 cm. Although flightless, has fairly longish tail. Sexes alike but female somewhat smaller. Lacks rufous and dark barring on remiges which is noticeable character... read more




Dense humid forest, now probably only in relatively inaccessible areas, but formerly also in... read more

Food and feeding

Captive birds ate raw meat and vegetable matter, and caught rats. Diet thought to be similar to that of Hypotaenidia sylvestris, i... read more


No information available.



Status and conservation

CRITICALLY ENDANGERED. Restricted-range species: present in New Caledonia EBA. Until recently, thought to be extinct because had not been recorded by ornithologists during... read more

Recommended citation

Taylor, B., de Juana, E. & Sharpe, C.J. (2019). New Caledonian Rail (Gallirallus lafresnayanus). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 11 December 2019).