Lewinia muelleri (Rothschild, 1893:40)

Auckland rail, Auckland Islands rail, Auckland Island rail



Taxonomy & Nomenclature

Synonym/s: Rallus brachipus; Travers 1883, Trans. Proc. N.Z. Inst. 15: 187. Not Rallus brachipus Swainson, 1838.; Rallus muelleri Rothschild, 1893: Bull. Brit. Ornith. Club 1(8): 40 – Auckland Island.; Hypotaenidia muelleri (Rothschild, 1893:40); Buller 1905, Suppl. Birds N.Z. 1: 42.; Rallus pectoralis muelleri (Rothschild, 1893:40); Checklist Committee 1953, Checklist N.Z. Birds: 39.; Dryolimnas pectoralis muelleri (Rothschild, 1893:40); Marchant & Higgins 1993, HANZAB 2: 529.; Dryolimnas muelleri (Rothschild, 1893:40); Holdaway et al. 2001, New Zealand Journ. Zool. 28(2): 132, 178.


Conservation Status

Last record: 1865?

Rediscovered in 1966

IUCN RedList status: Vulnerable



Auckland Islands / Maukahuka, New Zealand


Biology & Ecology




Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa:

OR.024502 (collected 22 November 1989)



Above: Auckland Island Rail, Lewinia muelleri, collected 22 November 1989, Maclaren Bay, Adams Island, New Zealand. CC BY 4.0. Te Papa (OR.024502)


Above: Auckland Island Rail, Lewinia muelleri, collected 22 November 1989, Maclaren Bay, Adams Island, New Zealand. CC BY 4.0. Te Papa (OR.024502)



Original scientific description:

Rothschild, Walter. (1893). "a new species of Rail". Bulletin of the British Ornithologists' Club 1(8): 40-41.

Other references:

BirdLife International. (2012). Lewinia muelleri. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. ( Downloaded on 22 February 2014.

Checklist Committee (OSNZ). (2010). Checklist of the Birds of New Zealand, Norfolk and Macquarie Islands, and the Ross Dependency, Antarctica (4th ed.). Ornithological Society of New Zealand & Te Papa Press, Wellington. [p. 178-179]

Checklist Committee (OSNZ). (2022). Checklist of the Birds of New Zealand (5th edition). Ornithological Society of New Zealand Occasional Publication No. 1. Wellington: Ornithological Society of New Zealand. [p. 55]

Elliott, G. P., Walker, K. J. and Buckingham, R. (1991). The Auckland Islands Rail. Notornis 38(3): 199-209.

Elliott, G.P.; Walker, K.J.; Parker, G.C.; Rexer-Huber, K. & Miskelly, C.M. 2020. Subantarctic Adams Island and its birdlife. Notornis 67: 153-187.

Falla, R.A. 1967. An Auckland Island rail. Notornis 14: 107–113.

Marchant, S. & Higgins, P.J. (Eds) 1993. Handbook of Australian, New Zealand & Antarctic birds. Raptors to lapwings. Volume 2. Melbourne: Oxford University Press. 984 pp.

Marples, B. K. (1946). List of the birds of New Zealand. Notornis 1(supp.): i-vii.

Miskelly, C.M.; Elliott, G.P.; Parker, G.C.; Rexer- Huber, K.; Russ, R.B.; Taylor, R.H.; Tennyson, A.J.D. & Walker, K.J. 2020. Birds of the Auckland Islands, New Zealand subantarctic. Notornis 67: 59-151.

Sibley, C.G. & Monroe, B.L. Jr. 1990. Distribution and taxonomy of birds of the world. New Haven, Connecticut: Yale University Press. xxiv + 1111 pp.

Taylor, B. & van Perlo, B. 1998. Rails – a guide to the rails, crakes, gallinules and coots of the world. Robertsbridge, East Sussex: Pica Press. 600 pp.

Tennyson, A.J.D. 2020. Holocene bird bones found at the subantarctic Auckland Islands. Notornis 67: 269-294.

Walker, K.J.; Elliott, G.P.; Rexer-Huber, K.; Parker, G.C.; Sagar, P.M. & McClelland, P.J. 2020. Shipwrecks and mollymawks: an account of Disappointment Island birds. Notornis 67: 213-245.


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