Friday 17 May
Laysan crake (Porzana palmeri)
Laysan crake fact file
- Find out more
- Print factsheet
Laysan crake description
The Laysan crake went extinct in 1944 following human disturbance and the introduction of non-native species. It was brown on the back with black streaks. The underparts were grey and the undertail was chestnut with black and white bars. The eyes were red, the bill yellow, and the legs greenish (3).
- Also known as
- Laysan rail.
- Length: 15 cm (2)
- BirdLife International:
- A species or taxonomic group that is only found in one particular country or geographic area.
- Accumulated droppings found where large colonies of animals such as seals, bats or birds occur; it is rich in nutrients.
- Animals with no backbone.
- Putting an animal or plant into an area where the species or sub-species previously lived but from which they are locally extinct - usually referring to projects aiming to re-establish self-perpetuating populations.
- A population usually restricted to a geographical area that differs from other populations of the same species, but not to the extent of being classified as a separate species.
- The transfer of individuals from one area for release or planting in another.
- IUCN Red List (February, 2005)
- Answers.com (February, 2005)
- Birding Hawaii (February, 2005)
- view the contents of, and Material on, the website;
- download and retain copies of the Material on their personal systems in digital form in low resolution for their own personal use;
- teachers, lecturers and students may incorporate the Material in their educational material (including, but not limited to, their lesson plans, presentations, worksheets and projects) in hard copy and digital format for use within a registered educational establishment, provided that the integrity of the Material is maintained and that copyright ownership and authorship is appropriately acknowledged by the End User.
Laysan crake biology
This small, flightless member of the rail family was very rapid on the ground (3), and would feed opportunistically on invertebrates and the eggs of seabirds. It was an aggressive feeder and would defend its prey from other bird species, particularly the Laysan finch (2). It called in chorus at night; pinging, rattling and warbling (3).Top
Laysan crake range
Endemic to Laysan Island in the Hawaiian archipelago, the Laysan crake briefly occupied several other Hawaiian Islands in the years before its extinction, as attempts were made to conserve it via translocations (1).Top
Laysan crake habitatTop
Laysan crake status
The Laysan crake is classified as Extinct (EX) on the IUCN Red List 2004 (1).Top
Laysan crake threats
The Laysan crake was initially threatened by the habitat destruction caused by rabbits and guinea pigs that were introduced by guano diggers. The rabbits ate the entire vegetation cover on Laysan Island, leaving a dusty terrain that prompted the extinction of several endemic species and subspecies, as it reduced the availability of insect prey. The Laysan crake went extinct on Laysan Island in the 1920s. However, it had already been introduced to the Midway Atoll in 1891, and following its eradication on Laysan, plans were set in motion to introduce it, along with the Laysan finch, to several of the main islands of Hawaii and to reintroduce it to Laysan Island. However, concerns over the possibility that the Laysan finch might prove to be a pest elsewhere halted the move of both species. The Laysan crake remained on Midway Atoll only until the Second World War, when in 1943, a US Navy landing craft drifted ashore, releasing black rats on to the island. The rats preyed upon the crake and within two years it was extinct (2). Before the extinction of the Laysan crake, its previous habitat on Laysan Island had been fully restored, and the rabbits eradicated (3).Top
Laysan crake conservation
This bird is now classified as extinct (1).Top
Find out more
For more information on this and other bird species please see:
This information is awaiting authentication by a species expert, and will be updated as soon as possible. If you are able to help please contact:
More »Related species
Play the Team WILD game
MyARKive offers the scrapbook feature to signed-up members, allowing you to organize your favourite ARKive images and videos and share them with friends.
Terms and Conditions of Use of Materials
Copyright in this website and materials contained on this website (Material) belongs to Wildscreen or its licensors.
Visitors to this website (End Users) are entitled to:
End Users shall not copy or otherwise extract, alter or manipulate Material other than as permitted in these Terms and Conditions of Use of Materials.
Additional use of flagged material
Green flagged material
Certain Material on this website (Licence 4 Material) displays a green flag next to the Material and is available for not-for-profit conservation or educational use. This material may be used by End Users, who are individuals or organisations that are in our opinion not-for-profit, for their not-for-profit conservation or not-for-profit educational purposes. Low resolution, watermarked images may be copied from this website by such End Users for such purposes. If you require high resolution or non-watermarked versions of the Material, please contact Wildscreen with details of your proposed use.
Creative commons material
Certain Material on this website has been licensed to Wildscreen under a Creative Commons Licence. These images are clearly marked with the Creative Commons buttons and may be used by End Users only in the way allowed by the specific Creative Commons Licence under which they have been submitted. Please see http://creativecommons.org for details.
Any other use
Please contact the copyright owners directly (copyright and contact details are shown for each media item) to negotiate terms and conditions for any use of Material other than those expressly permitted above. Please note that many of the contributors to ARKive are commercial operators and may request a fee for such use.
Save as permitted above, no person or organisation is permitted to incorporate any copyright material from this website into any other work or publication in any format (this includes but is not limited to: websites, Apps, CDs, DVDs, intranets, extranets, signage, digital communications or on printed materials for external or other distribution). Use of the Material for promotional, administrative or for-profit purposes is not permitted.