"Gather ye rose-buds while ye may." Robert Herrick

"Gather ye rose-buds while ye may." Robert Herrick

Hello Friends!

Friends, Romans, countrymen...y'all. Foodies, gardeners, artists and collectors - let's gather together to share and possibly learn a thing or two in the mix.

Donna Baker

Saturday, April 24, 2010

When Whippoorwills Call

I heard a whippoorwill this eve. The first this year. I don't know where they go in winter. I love to hear them with their three distinct whistles. Many songs laud the whippoorwill's call - too many in fact to list here. There are also many early native American legends about the whippoorwill. The Omaha's believed its song was an omen of death while the Ute's thought the whippoorwill was a god of the night. There were also early American legends surrounding the bird. Washington Irving mentions it in THE LEGEND OF SLEEPY HOLLOW. One New England legend says the Whippoorwill can sense a soul departing and can capture it as it flees. Who knew? For Earth Day, we should know that this bird is becoming endangered and/or threatened by habitat destruction, predation by feral cat and dog populations and insecticides. They are ground dwellers; build their nests on the ground and you rarely see them - just hear that lonesome whippoorwill...

photo by J.W. Dingel


  1. Donna... I don't think I've ever seen a whippoorwill!? I remember sitting on my Grandpa's porch when I was a kid in North Arkansas and listening to them in the evenings.. but I don't remember seeing one... I'm going to have to show my sister your photo!

    and yes... I bet we would be great friends if we lived closer together... but you can bet I'll look you up the next time I come your way!

    hugs. Dixie

  2. Whippoorwill came to my house under my bedroom window the morning of 11 May 2011 at 0530. At 9:00 p.m. same night it was on my front porch. It did this for two weeks. If I moved to another room, it would come to that window. It fluttered in my face when I went on the porch but didn't fly away. Exactly one month later - 11 June at 0530 my daughter passed away after a brief battle with cancer. She lived in S.C. and I am in WV. Eerie? you bet!!

  3. There's definitely some truth to what this bird knows. I was camping out a little while back and I heard this bird at night for the first time. Later on that night I heard an owl hooting. That night I got bit by a kissing bug and I'm fairly certain infected with Chagas disease. I think I'm fighting the disease off. But I just awoke tonight to the sound of the whip-poor-will again and so decided to leave where I was at and come down here to the computer. I may have dodged the first omen but I'm really curious now about this second one. Not afraid, just curious, and I think I should contact my loved ones tomorrow and/or go try to heal another person's baby who I heard might also have contracted the Chagas disease. Thanks for sharing your stories everyone!


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