Zenfolio | Bruce Fellman | Whip-poor-wills, at last

Whip-poor-wills, at last

July 09, 2018  •  1 Comment

One of the signature sounds of the singing year was the call of a bird that repeatedly invokes his name: whip-poor-will... whip-poor-will... whip-poor-will... When I say repeat, I'm not exaggerating—sometimes the name-calling, which starts at dusk, goes on all night. And the fact that they're so loud and insistent is a good thing, because you rarely see a Whip-poor-will, which are the color of leaf litter tinged with essence of twilight. Sadly for us, these evenings, we no longer hear these magical birds in our neighborhood. Throughout their haunts, they've experienced a dramatic population decline due to habitat loss. But, tonight, on a hunch, my wife, who is also feeling the absence, and I drove to the "rabbitat" clear-cut I mentioned yesterday, and no sooner had I opened the car door than that old familiar voice rang out to usher in the evening. Praise be: the manager-wizards of the Pachaug State Forest got another thing right, and the Whip-poor-wills are reaping the rewards of their expertise. So are we.


It must be about 85 years since I heard a whip poor will. Mystical sound.
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