Thursday, March 17, 2011

American Woodcock dance

It is the time of year for American Woodcock display flights, and many have been reported across Connecticut. I spotted the bird in the photos below after it walked across a path in front of me in the Stratford Great Meadows IBA.

Wandering around but still watching me

Frozen in place

It continued away from me on foot to look for a snack, doing the little woodcock "dance" for several seconds before freezing, which you can see in this HD video.

American Woodcock from Connecticut Audubon Society.

Look at how well it blends in to the leaf litter environment. I always love seeing them in the middle of the day because of that walk, their beautiful colors, and huge eyes, which are always scanning in every direction for dangers like me. I flushed another bird a few minutes later, which is the usual way you find them in the daytime. Nevertheless, walk carefully and slowly and you may get lucky enough to encounter a woodcock in the manner I did.

Photos and video © Scott Kruitbosch

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