Wednesday, March 13, 2013

I Heard an American Woodcock!

I first stumbled across American Woodcocks (or, if you prefer, "Timberdoodles") a couple of summers ago in the meadows of Naugatuck State Forest. Since then, I've been hoping to someday get to meet these birds again, and especially to see and hear their funky dusk-time mating displays. Well, spring is coming now, and lots of male birds are getting into courtship mode around here, so late this evening, I convinced Paul to head out with me to the middle of Naugatuck State Forest to see if any American Woodcocks were out and about. And lo, there was at least one male out in the woods, calling his little heart out with his strange, buzzing, kazoo-like call (which birders describe as "peenting"). Sing it, little Timberdoodle! (You'll need to turn the volume way up to hear him in this video. And don't mind the airplane going by overhead.)

Unfortunately, we had to leave before it got too dark, so I missed the later stages of this bird's mating display, in which the male launches up into the air and flies around in circles while making whistling sounds with his feathers. Really, though, I'm just proud of myself for accurately guessing where and when these birds would show up, and getting to confirm that the woodcocks are indeed back in the area this year. :)

As a bonus, the sky over the meadows looked really pretty just before sunset:

Tonight's adventure was a brief one, but it was definitely worth it!


  1. Cool! I would love the see the woodcock show! Your sky shot is beautiful.

  2. Many times when I go out to watch birds or other wildlife, I find myself admiring the cloud forms and colors. All of nature is amazing!