Did You Know?

  • Wilson’s snipe is a large shorebird (10.5 inches long and weighing about 4 oz).  Like most shorebirds, this species likes to forage on mudflats and in water less than three inches deep in wetlands and along shorelines.  Snipe will use their 3-inch long bill to probe into the mud for such morsels as larvae and earthworms.  Snipe nest in Canada and across the northern tier of the U.S.

  • A snipe will lay, almost always, four eggs.
  • Both male and female will take turns incubating.
  • As soon as the young are ready to leave the nest, the brood is spilt up, with the male taking half the young, thus assuring the greatest chance of survival.
  • Snipe hunters must be able to distinguish their quarry from other similar-looking, yet protected species such as yellowlegs and dowitchers. The yellowlegs species have a white rump patch and dowitchers have a white stripe that runs from the rump to the middle of the back.  A snipe doesn’t have any white on its back.
  • Snipe fly in a zig-zag pattern and more powerfully than yellowlegs and dowitchers.  Yellowlegs and dowitchers tend to fly in a straight line.
  • Snipe tend to give a single-note call when flushed, while dowitchers and yellowlegs typically give multiple-note calls.