Sora

Porzana carolina

Order

GRUIFORMES

Family

Rails, Gallinules and Coots (Rallidae)

Code 4

SORA

Code 6

PORCAR

ITIS

ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

Least Concern

The Sora is a small rail bird, and prefers to breed in southeastern Alaska, Newfoundland, northwestern Baja California, southern New Mexico, eastern Colorado, southern Missouri, central Ohio and Maryland in the United States. In winter months, the Sora will migrate southward to central California, southern Texas and the Gulf Coast, Central America and parts of South America. This species prefers areas of freshwater marshlands, flooded cultivated fields, swamplands and slough borders. The current conservation rating for the Sora is Least Concern due to maintained or increasing population numbers in recent years.

IBIRD EXPLORER GENERAL

PHOTO SHARING AND DISCUSSION

BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY

SUMMARY

Overview

Sora: This small rail has dark gray-brown upperparts with black-and-white streaks, gray breast and dark gray flanks and belly with white bars. Gray head has a darker crown and nape and black face, chin and throat. It has a dark-tipped yellow bill. Low, weak and floppy flight over short distances with legs dangling. Feeds on seeds, grasses, insects and snails. Sexes are similar.

 

Range and Habitat

Sora: Breeds from southeastern Alaska, east to Newfoundland, and south locally to northwestern California, southern New Mexico, eastern Colorado, Iowa, central Ohio, and Maryland. Winters from central California, to southern Texas and the Gulf Coast states, and south through Central America to South America. Prefers freshwater marshes, flooded fields, and swamps.

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Sora SONGS AND CALLS

Sora A1

"Ker-wee" calls are heard most often in the spring.

Sora C1

Most common call is a descending whinny, "whee-hee-hee-hee-hee".

Similar Sounding


Voice Text

"Dee", "ner-wee"

INTERESTING FACTS

  • The Sora is the most common and widely distributed rail in North America. It is sometimes also referred to as the Sora Rail or Sora Crake.
  • Although shot in large numbers every year, their high reproductive rate enables them to maintain a stable population.
  • Their greatest threat is the destruction of the freshwater marshes where they breed: they have consequently become scarce in heavily populated areas.
  • A group of soras are collectively known as an "ache", "expression", and "whinny" of soras.

SIMILAR BIRDS

RANGE MAP NORTH AMERICA

About this North America Map

This map shows how this species is distributed across North America.

RANGE MAP HAWAII

About this Hawaii Map

This map shows how this species is distributed across the Hawaiian island.

FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Author

Gary Owen Dick

Artist

Yury Lisyak

HELP ME IDENTIFY A BIRD

BACKYARD BIRDING

BIRDS AND BIRDING

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UpperpartsX
Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
BellyX
The ventral part of the bird, or the area between the flanks on each side and the crissum and breast. Flight muscles are located between the belly and the breast.
BreastX
The upper front part of a bird.
ChinX
The area of the face just below the bill.
CrownX
The crown is the top part of the birds head.
FaceX
The front part of the head consisting of the bill, eyes, cheeks and chin.
NapeX
Also called the hindneck or collar, it is the back of the neck where the head joins the body.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X