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Bird name:

Snipe

Gallinago gallinago

Order

CHARADRIIFORMES

Family

Sandpipers (Scolopacidae)

BTO 2

SN

BTO 5

SNIPE

Euring 5

05190
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ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

UK Conservation Status


Amber Status

European Conservation Status


Conservation Description


The Snipe is resident in much of the UK, Isle of Man, and Ireland. It has an "Amber" status because of sharp recent population declines in some areas.

SUMMARY

Overview

Snipe: Long-billed, Blackbird-sized bird. Tawny-brown head with dark grey-brown stripes on crown, through eye, and on cheek. Tawny brown neck, breast, and vent with dark brown spotting and streaking. Orange-brown on back, wings, and tail with black and white streaks and mottling. White belly.


Range and Habitat

Snipe: Resident breeder and winter visitor in the UK & Ireland. Resident birds are found across the UK, especially upland areas. Some birds in NW Scotland are summer breeders. During breeding season, birds are found on open moorland, in winter at the coast and on grassy wetlands.

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SONGS AND CALLS

Voice Text

"scaap"

INTERESTING FACTS

  • The male Snipe performs "winnowing" displays during courtship, circling high then diving, producing a distinctive sound as the air flows over specially modified tail feathers.
  • This behavior has given rise to the Finnish name, "Taivaanvuohi", or "sky goat", because the sound is similar to the sound a goat makes.
  • Their clutch size is almost always four eggs. When the first two chicks hatch, the male takes them from the nest and cares for them. The last two chicks to hatch are cared for by the female. The two groups do not interact after they part.
  • A group of snipes has many collective nouns, including a "leash", "walk", "whisper", "winnowing", and "volley" of snipes.

RELATED BIRDS

RANGE MAP


FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Author

Artist

David Wenzel

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BellyX
The ventral part of the bird, or the area between the flanks on each side and the crissum and breast. Flight muscles are located between the belly and the breast.
BreastX
The upper front part of a bird.
CrownX
The crown is the top part of the birds head.
VentX
Birds do not have two separate cavities for excrement and reproduction like humans do. In birds, there is one single entrance/exit that suits both functions called the vent, cloaca or anus.
4 and 6 letter alpha codesX

The four letter common name alpha code is is derived from the first two letters of the common first name and the first two letters of common last name. The six letter species name alpha code is derived from the first three letters of the scientific name (genus) and the first three letters of the scientific name (species). See (1) below for the rules used to create the codes..

Four-letter (for English common names) and six-letter (for scientific names) species alpha codes were developed by Pyle and DeSante (2003, North American Bird-Bander 28:64-79) to reflect A.O.U. taxonomy and nomenclature (A.O.U. 1998) as modified by Supplements 42 (Auk 117:847-858, 2000) and 43 (Auk 119:897-906, 2002). The list has been updated by Pyle and DeSante to reflect changes reported by the A.O.U from 2003 through 2006.

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ITIS CodesX

The Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS) was established in the mid-1990 s as a cooperative project among several federal agencies to improve and expand upon taxonomic data (known as the NODC Taxonomic Code) maintained by the National Oceanographic Data Center (NODC), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

To find the ITIS page for a bird species go to the ITIS web site advanced search and report page at http://www.itis.gov/advanced_search.html. You can enter the TSN or the common name of the bird. It will return the ITIS page for that bird. Another way to obtain the ITIS page is to use the Google search engine. Enter the string ITIS followed by the taxonomic ID, for example "ITIS 178041" will return the page for the Allen's Hummingbird.

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Parts of a Standing birdX
Head Feathers and MarkingsX
Parts of a Flying birdX