American Woodcock

Scolopax minor

Order

CHARADRIIFORMES

Family

Sandpipers, Phalaropes (Scolopacidae)

Code 4

AMWO

Code 6

SCOMIN

ITIS

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ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

Least Concern

The American Woodcock has a large breeding range of 1,600,000 square kilometers. It breeds in wet woodlands and second growth in southern Canada and the eastern United States, and winters in swampy woods and second growth in the southeastern United States. Although this species may be threatened by pesticides in some areas, it is believed to have a large and stable population. The American Woodcock has a conservation rating of Least Concern.

IBIRD EXPLORER GENERAL

PHOTO SHARING AND DISCUSSION

BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY

SUMMARY

Overview

American Woodcock: Medium, stocky sandpiper with buff-brown underparts and dark-streaked gray-brown upperparts. Head shows black bars rather than the stripes of most other sandpipers. Eyes are black and very large; bill is dull yellow with a black tip and is long and stout. Pale gray legs and feet.

 

Range and Habitat

American Woodcock: Migratory bird, primary breeding range takes in southern Canada, Maine and the Great Lakes region, dropping down as far as central West Virginia. Winter range includes Virginia, North and South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas and Texas. Found in open woodlands and moist overgrown fields.

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SONGS AND CALLS

Voice Text

"peent"

INTERESTING FACTS

  • In this species, there is no pair bond and the male provides no parental care. Nor is there any evidence of a social dominance hierarchy.
  • The elaborate courtship ritual of the male American Woodcock may be repeated as long as four months running, sometimes continuing even after females have already hatched their brood and left the nest.
  • These birds are seldom seen during the day. They are typically active during times of low light such as dawn, dusk, moonlit nights and sometime on cloudy days. They also migrate at night, singly or in small, loose flocks.
  • A group of woodcocks has many collective nouns, including a "cord", "fall", "flight", "plump", and "rush" of woodcocks.

SIMILAR BIRDS

RANGE MAP NORTH AMERICA

About this North America Map

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

FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Author

Gary Owen Dick

Artist

Michael Oberhofer

HELP ME IDENTIFY A BIRD

BACKYARD BIRDING

BIRDS AND BIRDING

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UnderpartsX

Belly, undertail coverts, chest, flanks, and foreneck.

UpperpartsX
Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X