This study documented the first breeding of Eastern Black Rails (Laterallus jamaicensis jamaicensis) in South Carolina, USA in more than a century. Previously, the only accepted nesting record in the state consisted of a single nest collected during 1903. Using motion-activated camera traps, we captured 942 photographs of Black Rails and documented Black Rail chicks during the summers of 2015 and 2016, and juveniles that were flightless, but nearly fully-feathered in 2016. Although, historically, Black Rails were considered to only be “accidental breeders” in the state, as population declines are documented in the Mid-Atlantic USA, coastal South Carolina may have increased importance within the breeding range.
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Vol. 42 • No. 2