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: Found in open woodlands and moist overgrown fields from southern Canada to the Gulf Coast.
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.
The American Woodcock is native to Mexico, Canada, the United States and Saint Pierre. The range of this bird is fairly extensive, up to 4 million square kilometers around the world. The concern regarding the population of the American Woodcock is not currently serious as the population is not believed to meet the minimum levels that would indicate possible decline over the next several years. From 1988 to 2000, the evaluation rating for the American Woodcock bird species was Lower Risk; however, in 2004 the rating was downgraded to Least Concern due to lower concerns.