Family Sandpipers, Snipes, Phalaropes (Scolopacidae)

Near Threatened

Auckland Snipe (Coenocorypha aucklandica)


French: Bécassine des Auckland German: Aucklandschnepfe Spanish: Chochita de las Auckland
Other common names: Subantarctic Snipe, New Zealand Snipe (when lumped with †C. iredalei and C. huegeli)

Gallinago aucklandica

G. R. Gray

, 1845,

Auckland Islands


Closely related to C. pusilla, with which sometimes considered conspecific, especially in past (see that species); until recently, considered conspecific with †C. iredalei and C. huegeli (which see). Formerly considered conspecific with extinct †C. barrierensis. Three subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • C. a. aucklandica (G. R. Gray, 1845) – Auckland Is (Disappointment, Ewing and Adams; reported also on Figure of Eight, Rose, Enderby, Ocean and Dundas).
  • C. a. perseverance Miskelly & A. J. Baker, 2010 – Campbell I and Jacquemart I (Campbell Is).
  • C. a. meinertzhagenae Rothschild, 1927 – Antipodes Is (Antipodes, Bollons, Archway and Inner Windward).
  • Descriptive notes

    21–24 cm; 82–129 g; wingspan 30–35 cm. Small, compact snipe with very short legs and long, slightly drooping bill. Nominate is largest and palest race, with... read more


    Nocturnal drumming display (‘hakawai’), similar to that of C. pusilla and C. huegeli... read more


    Cool temperate and subantarctic islands, occurring in tussock grassland on cliff tops, and in moist... read more

    Food and feeding

    Mainly soil-dwelling invertebrates, such as earthworms, amphipods, isopods, small spiders, adult beetles, various insects (including... read more


    Overall lays mid-Aug to Apr; nominate between late Sept and Jan (peak late Nov), race meinertzhagenae from mid Aug to early Nov... read more


    Presumably sedentary, even within island groups, although race perseverance was apparently... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Currently considered Near Threatened. Total population estimated at 34,000 birds but might be much higher, with Auckland Is probably holding more... read more

    Recommended citation

    Van Gils, J., Wiersma, P. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Auckland Snipe (Coenocorypha aucklandica). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 19 February 2020).