Plate 34: Virginia Rail

Rallus limicola

Nests & Eggs: Virginia Rail

Marsh bird that is “seldom seen but often heard.”

The pig-like grunts and squawks of a pair of Virginia Rails may bewilder the casual wayfarer near a cat-tail marsh. Rails are rarely seen but may appear along one of the open waterways if the observer remains motionless and silent.

An Introduction to the Birds of Pennsylvania by Sutton
  • Print out the notebooking pages provided below.
  • Read the section about the Virginia rail in Nests & Eggs out loud.
  • Have a younger student orally narrate what was read. He can then copy a few lines of his narration onto the notebooking pages.
  • Older students can read the text, Plate XXXIV: Virginia Rail, and provide a written narration.
  • Sketch the bird. This encourages attention to detail, which will aid in identifying the bird later on. Another option is to use the printables provided below.
  • Sketch the nest of the bird, along with the eggs. Note where the nest is usually found.
  • Older students can include the taxonomy.
  • Learn more about the Virginia Rail at Cornell.
  • On one notebooking page note the facts:
    • Description.
    • Habitat.
    • Range.
    • Food.
    • Nest.
    • Eggs.
    • Call.
Additional Resources

30 Narration Ideas
At some point you might appreciate some variety.

The Bird Study sections of our free nature study series: Our Wonderful World:

Free Nature Studies: Our Wonderful World
Printables & Notebooking Pages

Virginia Rail Notebooking Pages
Free simple notebooking set.

Bird picture for notebook.

Virginia Rail Range Map
For notebook from Cornell.

Bird Facts Notebooking Page
One option in a more graphic organizer style that is especially nice for noting the facts and range.

Enjoy the entire series:
Nest & Eggs ~ Intro & Free eBook
Free Bird Studies: Nests & Eggs ~ Complete Series

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