Justification of Red List Category
Although this species may have a small range, it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (extent of occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the rate of decline is unknown but not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size may be small, but it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). Therefore, the species is listed as Least Concern, but further information regarding the impact of trapping on this species may mean it warrants uplisting in the future.
The population is estimated to number 10,000-25,000 individuals in total, roughly equivalent to 6,700-17,000 mature individuals. However, there have been low encounter rates during surveys, and the population size could be lower (P. Davidar in litt. 2016); though these low encounter rates could be due to difficulties in locating the species, and it may be locally common in its preferred habitat (P. Davidar in litt. 2016).
This species is suspected to be declining owing primarily to heavy trapping pressure; the rate of decline is, however, unknown.
Rallina canningi is endemic to the Andaman Islands, in the Bay of Bengal, India, where there are records from several islands in the Andamans (see Pande et al. 2007, eBird 2017), although it may be rare on smaller islands (P. Davidar in litt. 2016). Formerly considered very common based on high trapping rates, there were very few recent records until survey work in 2004 found it to be fairly common in suitable habitat (Ezhilarasi and Vijayan 2008). However, there have been low encounter rates during surveys, though this could be due to difficulties in locating the species, and it may be locally common in its preferred habitat (P. Davidar in litt. 2016).
It is resident in marshes and along streams within or at the edge of moist forest, and occasionally mangroves, favouring dense vegetation including tangled thickets of rattan and pandanus. Breeding may be related to rainfall and humidity, and negatively correlated with temperature (Ezhilarasi and Vijayan 2013).
It is known to be under heavy trapping pressure, and may also be declining as a result of increasing habitat destruction and degradation through forest clearance for settlements, cultivation, road construction, and other infrastructural projects. Introduced predators are another potential threat.
Conservation Actions Underway
It is known from several Protected Areas. The Department of Environment and Forests, Andaman & Nicobar Islands has initiated steps to conserve the endemic and threatened bird species of Andaman and Nicobar Islands and the Zoological Survey of India is monitoring the bird population of this archipelago (C. Sivaperuman in litt. 2016).Conservation Actions Proposed
Conduct surveys throughout its range to determine its current population size. Assess the extent and impact of habitat loss on populations. Quantify the impact of trapping on populations. Try to stop trapping if appropriate. Protect large areas of suitable habitat at key sites, in both strictly protected areas and community-led multiple use areas.
34 cm. Large, chestnut crake with indistinct dense black-and-white belly-barring. Green bill and legs. Juveniles duller and less prominently barred below. Similar spp. Similar Rallina crakes and Ruddy-breasted Crake Porzana fusca are smaller and do not have green bill and legs. Voice Throaty croaking kroop kroop and sharp chik notes when alarmed.
Text account compilers
Khwaja, N., Tobias, J., Taylor, J., Benstead, P., Davidson, P., Mahood, S., Westrip, J., Peet, N.
Sivaperuman, C., Li, Z., Praveen, J., Hornbuckle, J., Davidar, P.
BirdLife International (2019) Species factsheet: Rallina canningi. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 22/04/2019. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2019) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 22/04/2019.