Woodcock

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2023-07-18 Snargl 0 minute 0 second

Where does the Woodcock live?

The woodcock is a bird that lives in damp, dense woodlands, where it feeds on earthworms and insects by probing the soil with its long bill.
There are five species of woodcock, distributed across North America, Europe, and Asia.
They are related to the snipes, but have different habits and adaptations.

The American woodcock (Scolopax minor) is found in eastern North America, from southern Canada to the Gulf Coast.
It prefers a mix of forest and open fields, often spending the day in the forest and the night in the open.
It migrates southward in winter, but some may remain in the northern states if the weather is mild.
It performs a remarkable 'sky dance' on spring and summer nights, in which it flies high and twists in the air, making musical sounds with its wings and voice.

The Eurasian woodcock (Scolopax rusticola) is found in Europe and Asia, from Ireland and Scandinavia to Japan and Indonesia.
It inhabits deciduous or mixed woods with moist soil and thick undergrowth, such as birch woods.
It is mainly nocturnal and secretive, and rarely seen unless flushed by a dog or a hunter.
It migrates southward in winter, but some may remain in the northern regions if the weather is mild.
It also performs a 'roding' display flight at dusk and dawn, in which it flies low over the treetops, making croaking and squeaking sounds.

The other three species of woodcock are the Amami woodcock (Scolopax mira), the Javan woodcock (Scolopax saturata), and the Bukidnon woodcock (Scolopax bukidnonensis).
They are all endemic to islands in Southeast Asia, and are poorly known and threatened by habitat loss.
They are similar to the Eurasian woodcock in appearance and behavior, but smaller and darker.
They also perform display flights, but their vocalizations are different.
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What does the Woodcock look like?

A woodcock is a type of wading bird that belongs to the family Scolopacidae.

There are eight living species of woodcocks, most of them endemic to specific islands or regions.

Woodcocks have short legs, a very long straight tapering bill, and brown, black, and gray plumage that provides excellent camouflage in the leaf litter.

They are largely nocturnal and spend most of the day in dense cover, where they probe the soil for earthworms and other invertebrates.

Some of the widespread species of woodcocks are the American woodcock (Scolopax minor) and the Eurasian woodcock (Scolopax rusticola).

The American woodcock is found primarily in the eastern half of North America, while the Eurasian woodcock has a large range across Eurasia.

Both species perform elaborate courtship displays at dawn or dusk, where the males give loud, nasal peent calls and fly in spiraling patterns to attract females.
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