Bird Photography Weekly


Common or Wilson’s or Eurasian, whatever.  This is a Snipe.  When I first started birdwatching, this was a Common Snipe. Then they changed its name to Wilson’s Snipe.  Now I have no idea what it is called.  The Shorebird Guide says one thing, Big Sibley something else.  Want to weigh in on this?

To see other less confusing birds check out Birdfreak’s Bird Photography Weekly.


Filed under Photos, Travel

12 responses to “Bird Photography Weekly

  1. I think Wilson’s Snipe was split from Common Snipe after the publication of the Big Sibley. I don’t know whether the reasons for the split were sound, but I’m always in favor of splitting.

  2. Great photo – and I agree all the name changes are confusing. They happen out here in Australia too!

  3. Changing names is always confusing.

  4. Whichever we want to call it, it’s a wonderful bird.

  5. Lovely photo! I added one of the same to my life list just in January, and it seems that Wilson’s snipe is the proper name for the moment. From Cornell:

    “The Wilson’s Snipe was recently recognized as a different species from the Common Snipe of Eurasia. The two snipes look extremely similar, but differ in the shape, patterning, and usually the number of the tail feathers. The Wilson’s Snipe typically has 16 tail feathers, whereas the Common Snipe has 14. These numbers vary, however, and a Common Snipe may have from 12 to 18 tail feathers.”

    Like I’m going to count the tail feathers…

  6. Red

    Can’t help you with the name, but it’s contrast of brown and white sure are striking.

  7. Excellent capture Bev! With that really long bill and dark brown head stripe, I would call it a Wilson’s. Any way you look at it, it’s a really cool bird and an great photo!

  8. Great shot of a very reclusive (at least here in my neck of the woods) bird.

  9. If I were lucky enough to see one I wouldn’t care what it was called! Awesome photo Bev.

  10. One of my favorite birds. I always appreciate the complex feather detail. Sometimes they are right in front of you and you can’t even see them.

  11. Great capture, Bev. I can’t help much with the name thing, though… I’m still trying to figure out how to distinguish a snipe from all the other shorebirds out there! Living this close to the coast, I’ve really gotta put in a little time and figure these guys out.


    Or George, whatever…

  12. Still haven’t seen one yet. I always thought they were just fiction – you know, something you send a greenhorn out to look for. Guess I learned that from Spin and Marty, remember them?

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