Family Rails, Gallinules, Coots (Rallidae)


Slender-billed Flufftail (Sarothrura watersi)


French: Râle de Waters German: Lemurenralle Spanish: Polluela de Waters
Other common names: Waters's Flufftail

Zapornia watersi

E. Bartlett

, 1880,

south-east Betsileo Country, Madagascar


Present species has been thought to form a species pair with S. ayresi, but some authors consider it sufficiently distinctive in structural, morphological and vocal characters to merit placement in its own genus, Lemurolimnas#R. Monotypic.



Descriptive notes

14–17 cm; one male 26·5 g. Tail short, slightly fluffy; bill long and slender; differing from S. insularis (which may occur in same wetlands) in this... read more


Vocalizations quite unlike those of other Sarothrura in Madagascar. Muffled, solemn call,... read more


Small to large elevated wetlands with Cyperus (Cyperaceae) sedges but also Eleocharis... read more

Food and feeding

No information available.


Unknown; possibly breeds during rains. Male and female in breeding condition Andapa, early Sept; male called Ranomafana, Oct and Nov, and... read more


No evidence for any movements, with one colour-ringed individual retrapped at same site seven... read more

Status and conservation

ENDANGERED. Population most recently estimated at 250–999 mature individuals and its overall range is suspected to be 5900 km. Known only from six localities in three... read more

Recommended citation

Taylor, B. & Kirwan, G.M. (2019). Slender-billed Flufftail (Sarothrura watersi). 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 15 December 2019).