American Woodcock Scolopax minor


Justification of Red List Category
This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is extremely large, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.

Population justification
The global population is estimated to number 3,500,000 mature individuals (Partners in Flight 2019).

Trend justification
This species has undergone a large, significant decline between 1966 and 2017 (Partners in Flight 2019). Monitoring of displaying males during the breeding season across a large proportion of the breeding range suggest statistically significant declines of approximately 1% in annual abundance during 1968-2019 (Seamans and Rau 2019). This equates to declines of 13% over the past three generations (13.8 years). Declines are more pronounced in the eastern part of the range than in the western part (Seamans and Rau 2019).

Conservation actions

Conservation Actions Underway
Monitoring of populations through roadside counts of displaying males during the spring breeding season is coordinated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Environment and Climate Change Canada. These surveys cover a large proportion of the species’s breeding distribution.


Text account compilers
Blomberg, E., Hermes, C.

Gonçalves, D.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2021) Species factsheet: Scolopax minor. Downloaded from on 29/11/2021. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2021) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 29/11/2021.