Wildlife advent calendar: Day 22: Jack snipe
Unlike the common snipe, the Jack snipe is a winter visitor to the UK. They spend most of the year at their breeding grounds in northern Europe and Russia before migrating to the UK as the temperature drops in October and then returning in February. During this time, they can be seen all across Britain, except for the very north of Scotland.
They have a very characteristic long bill which is ideal for feeding on worms and insects, however, their beak is fairly small when compared to other species of snipe. Jack snipes can be found in lowland wetland areas among reed beds and flooded meadows. They are often very difficult to spot as their plumage camouflages the bird very well, in particular among reed beds.
Image taken from Flickr user Tony Hisgett
RSPB website – Jack Snipe