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BirdNote: American Woodcock

04/21/12 8:57AM
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At sunset, the male American Woodcock — a plump, robin-sized bird — walks slowly on short legs from the cover of the forest to a nearby clearing.

After a few sharp calls, the Woodcock takes flight. As it spirals upward, slim, stiff feathers at its wingtips create a curious twittering.

At the apex of its flight, the Woodcock circles, then descends in a slow spiral, putt-putting like a tiny car about to run out of gas.

The Woodcock’s odd looks and sounds have earned it many colorful nicknames. The most memorable? "Timberdoodle!"

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