The male Corncrake (Crex crex) has a characteristic mating call. In aviary
it has been shown that females can also produce a call similar to the male'
s typical "crex crex". I describe a strikingly different call produced by a
female on Oland, southeast Sweden. The sex identification was based on the
small size during close examination in the hand. The female call has a sim
ilar rhythm to the male call but lacks the rasping of the male and is almos
t a barking sound. The female was heard calling continuously at night throu
ghout a three-week-period. Another bird producing the same call was heard a
bout 100 m from the caught female suggesting two females in the same field.
No male Corncrakes were heard in the field during the period when the fema
le was calling. Possible explanations for this behaviour and the function o
f the call is discussed.