Jeff Wendorff's photography portfolio Rails, Coots, and Gallinule in the family, Rallidae.

Rallidae Wiki
The rails, or Rallidae, are a large cosmopolitan family of small- to medium-sized ground-living birds. The family exhibits considerable diversity and also includes the crakes, coots, and gallinules. Many species are associated with wetlands, although the family is found in every terrestrial habitat except dry deserts, polar regions, and alpine areas above the snow line. Members of the Rallidae occur on every continent except Antarctica. There are numerous island species. The most common rail habitats are marshland or dense forest. They are particularly fond of dense vegetation.

The rails are a relatively homogeneous family of small to medium-sized, ground-living birds. They vary in length from 12 to 63 cm (4.7 to 24.8 in) and in weight from 20 to 3,000 g (0.71 to 105.82 oz). Some species have long necks and in many cases are laterally compressed.

The bill is the most variable feature within the family. In some species, it is longer than the head (like the clapper rail of the Americas), in others it may be short and wide (as in the coots), or massive (as in the purple gallinules). A few coots and gallinules have a frontal shield, which is a fleshy, rearward extension of the upper bill. The most sophisticated frontal shield is found in the horned coot

Rails exhibit very little sexual dimorphism in either plumage or size.

Grebes Photographed
African Swamphen, Porphyrio madagascariensis
American Coot, Fulica americanus
Black Crake, Amaurornis flavirostra
Common Moorhen, Gallinula chloropus
Eurasian Coot, Fulica atra
Gray-necked Wood Rail, Aramides cajaneus
Purple Gallinule, Porphyrio martinica
Red-knobbed Coot, Fulica cristata


Collective Noun Coots, Rails and Galinules
The collective nouns for a group of coots are a commotion, cover, covert, fleet, raft, swarm.

A group of moorhens is a plump.

For Rails in flight, the collective noun is a Balustrade. I can't find one for a group of rails just hanging out, si I think that collective noun should be a track.

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African Swamphen also called Purple Swamphen in KenyaAmerican Coot in FloridaAmerican Coot in FloridaAmerican Coot in FloridaBlack Crake in KenyaCommon Moorhen in FloridaCommon Moorhen in FloridaCommon Moorhen in FloridaCommon Moorhen in FloridaEurasian Coot in AmsterdamEurasian Coot in AmsterdamEurasian Coot in AmsterdamGray-necked Wood Rail in PanamaPurple Gallinule wading in the EvergladesPurple Gallinule Everglades NPPurple Gallinule Everglades NPPurple Gallinule Everglades NPPurple Gallinule Everglades NPPurple Gallinule wing Detail