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Chatham snipe facts for kids

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Chatham snipe
Coenocorypha pusilla.jpg
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Synonyms
  • Gallinago pusilla Buller, 1869

The Chatham snipe or Chatham Island snipe (Coenocorypha pusilla) is a species of wader in the family Scolopacidae. It is endemic to the Chatham Islands of New Zealand, and is only found on a few islands in the south of the Chatham Islands group.

Its natural habitats are temperate forests and temperate grassland.

Chatham snipe feed by probing into the ground in search of worms, amphipods, insects and larvae.

Scientific discovery

Chatham snipe or Chatham Island snipe (Coenocorypha pusilla) Auckland museum
Chatham snipe (Coenocorypha pusilla) mounted skin

In 1868 the Chatham snipe was collected by naturalist Charles Traill and was sent to ornithologist Walter Buller who described it as a new species of snipe. On an exploratory mission to the islands in 1871, Henry Travers only found the snipe on Mangere Island. Attempts to return snipe to main Chatham Island would be hampered by the presence of introduced mammals and of weka, which are predators of snipe chicks.

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