Saturday, December 03, 2011


Josh and Stella, neighbors a couple of houses south, came knocking last night as we were going to bed. Libby called me to the door to say they had a "strange bird". In the dim light of the entry I thought (perfectly reasonable) snipe or dowitcher, but when I welcomed them in and turned on the living room light...

It was a WOODCOCK! Only 500 miles or so west of home...

I may have blurted something like "the last one of those I saw was in Maine in 87 and I ate it!" But it seemed in good condition but for being very thin.They picked it up in their yard, cold and unable to fly. Our guess is that the recent 70 mph plus east winds blew it off migration and food to here. He (male I think) is now in the capable hands of local rehabber and hawk sitter Jennifer Keller; more when we know more.


Chas Clifton said...

Never having lived woodcock territory, I probably would have explained, "That's an odd-looking sni
pe." But then I never said my birding skills were world-class.

I seem to recall reading recently of another woodcock found in the West--but where on the Webz was it?

Malcolm Brooks said...

Hi Steve--

I apologize for this circuitous method of contacting you, but I'm not able to locate your email address. In one of your books or articles I recall a reference to a fox-hunting novel in which a character says something along the lines of "I loves 'em, I loves 'em, I loves 'em, and I loves to kill 'em." Can you remind me of the source of this? My email is Thanks again for all you do, in blog, books, and life.

Malcolm Brooks

John Wilson said...

Wow! As it is said, "Birds have wings."

This is one really rare sighting. Makes me wonder how many of these little guys end up where the nobody ever sees them. The Sibley Guide shows two little green dots roughly where Bosque del Apache is (and where the watchers are).

Reid Farmer said...