Family Sandpipers, Snipes, Phalaropes (Scolopacidae)


Moluccan Woodcock (Scolopax rochussenii)


French: Bécasse des Moluques German: Obischnepfe Spanish: Chocha moluqueña
Other common names: Obi Woodcock

Scolopax Rochussenii


, 1866,



Closely related to S. celebensis, with which sometimes considered conspecific. Recent vocal evidence (none available for S. celebensis) suggests a close evolutionary relationship with S. bukidnonensis#R. Monotypic.


Obi and Bacan (N Moluccas). Claimed occurrence on Ternate and Halmahera probably erroneous, due perhaps to inaccurate museum labels and misidentification.

Descriptive notes

32–40 cm. Largest woodcock, c. 25% bulkier than S. rusticola; fairly long, heavy, dark bill; large, contrasting ochre-buff spots on black upperparts; bright... read more


In display (roding) flight (typically c. 10 m above canopy), around dawn and dusk, a loud and... read more


Previously assumed to be a bird of dense, moist montane forest; however, observations on Obi in... read more

Food and feeding

No information available, although anecdotal reports from local people suggest behaviour and diet probably similar to other, almost equally... read more


Nothing known; roding flights observed in Mar and Jul–Aug, but not in Nov–Dec.


Probably sedentary.

Status and conservation

ENDANGERED. Previously listed as Vulnerable. On Obi, at least two roding birds observed in Mar 2010 while dedicated surveys in Jul–Aug 2012 produced 51 records... read more

Recommended citation

Van Gils, J., Wiersma, P. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Moluccan Woodcock (Scolopax rochussenii). 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 18 February 2020).