Wilson's Snipe

Gallinago delicata

Summary 7

Wilson's Snipe (Gallinago delicata) is a small, stocky shorebird. This species was considered to be a subspecies of the Common Snipe (G. gallinago) until 2003 when it was given its own species status, though this is not recognized by all taxonomic authorities. Wilson's Snipe differs from the latter species in having a narrower white trailing edge to the wings, and eight pairs of tail feathers instead of the typical seven of the Common Snipe. Its common...

Gallinago delicata 8

A medium-sized (11 inches) wader, Wilson’s Snipe is most easily identified by its mottled-brown back, long bill, and orange tail patches. Other field marks include a pale belly, black facial stripes, and dull green legs. Male and female Wilson’s Snipes are similar to one another in all seasons. Wilson’s Snipe breeds widely across Alaska, Canada, and the northern tier of the United States. Birds breeding in the Pacific Northwest, in the interior western U. S, and along the Great Lakes are non-migratory. Other populations migrate south for the winter, where they may be found from the south-central U.S.south into Mexico, Central America, the West Indies, and South America. Wilson’s Snipes breed in freshwater marshes, swamps, and bogs with areas of marsh grasses for cover. This species utilizes similar habitats in winter as in summer. Wilson’s Snipes mainly eat insects and other small invertebrates. Wilson’s Snipes may be observed using their long bills to probe the mud for food. When flushed from a clump of marsh grasses, Wilson’s Snipes will explode into the air, flying in a zigzag pattern until it has reached safety. This species is active both during the day and at night, when it may feed.

Threat Status: Least concern

Sources and Credits

  1. (c) Larry Meade, some rights reserved (CC BY-NC-SA), http://www.flickr.com/photos/34323709@N07/7032716277/
  2. (c) Cephas, some rights reserved (CC BY-SA), https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/36/Gallinago_delicata_Nicolet.jpg
  3. (c) Alan Vernon, some rights reserved (CC BY), https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/5d/Wilson%27s_Snipe_San_Luis_Obispo.jpg
  4. (c) Mdf, some rights reserved (CC BY-SA), https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/ce/Gallinago-delicata-002.jpg/460px-Gallinago-delicata-002.jpg
  5. (c) Alan D. Wilson, some rights reserved (CC BY-SA), https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/7c/Wilsons_Snipe_in_Richmond_BC.jpg
  6. (c) Jan, some rights reserved (CC BY-NC), http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8156/7458488386_a7eea67f4f_k.jpg
  7. (c) Wikipedia, some rights reserved (CC BY-SA), http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gallinago_delicata
  8. (c) Unknown, some rights reserved (CC BY-NC-SA), http://eol.org/data_objects/22710096

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