Baillon's Crake ( Porzana pusilla, family: Rallidae)

baillons crake kruger national park birds The Baillon's Crake (Latin name Porzana pusilla) is described in Roberts Birds of Southern Africa, 7th Edition. This bird has a unique Roberts number of 215 and you will find a full description of this bird on page 327 also a picture of the Baillon's Crake on page 320. The Baillon's Crake belongs to the family of birds classified as Rallidae. According to the Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology the Baillon's Crake is also known by these other names: Lesser Spotted Crake, Marsh Crake.

The map of the Kruger you see on this page shows the areas (coloured orange) where this bird has been identified. The basic information was provided by the Avian Demographic Unit based at UCT and I created the maps from that information ... the green dots show the locations of the various Kruger National Park Rest Camps

The Baillon's Crake is neither Endemic or near Endemic to the Kruger National Park.

In terms of distribution of the Baillon's Crake in the Kruger National Park you may not see it in all areas. Baillon's Crake : see above distribution map.

Identification assistance for this avian species ...

One of the first indicators to take note of when trying to identify a bird is it relative size. For example how big is the bird compared to a well known familiar bird. The Baillon's Crake is a small bird about the size of a house sparrow. Do not take this relative indicator as anything other than a rough easy to remember indicator. It is not a accurate visualization. The height of the Baillon's Crake is about 16 cms and its weight is about 45 gms

The male and female Baillon's Crake have the same plumage and colours

  • Head is red, brown.
  • Eye is red.
  • Bill is green.
  • Throat is blue.
  • Back is brown.
  • Legs are green.

This bird has normally proportioned leg length.

Main diet items for this bird ...

The Baillon's Crake feeds on the ground mainly


Aquatic life forms

Breeding and nesting habits for this bird ...

The Baillon's Crake is monogamous unless its mate dies. In the event of a partner dying Porzana pusilla will seek out a new mate

The nesting habit of Baillon's Crake is to create the nest on the ground. The bird lays eggs which are olive in colour and number between 2 to 6

Habitat and flocking behaviour for this bird ...

The preferred habitats for Baillon's Crake are: wetlands

You will normally see the Baillon's Crake by itself rather than in the company of birds of the same species.

Names of this avian species in other languages ...

Xhosa ... Isazenza/Isizinzi

Zulu ... isiZinzi

Afrikaans ...Kleinriethaan

German ... Zwergsumpfhuhn

Portuguese ... Franga-d'gua-pequena

French ... Marouette de Baillon

Dutch ... Kleinst Waterhoen

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For in-depth birding information please refer to these authoritative avian references ...

Robert's 7th edition number ... 215

The main reference source for this data was "Roberts - Birds of Southern Africa, 7th Edition" . Other references were "Newmans Birds of the Kruger Park" by Keith Newman published circa 1980 . Names in foreign languages were obtained from the Percy Fitzpatrick Institute of African Ornithology, University of Cape Town website ,