Tag Archives: bird

The whip-poor-will

8 Aug

I’ve spent many hours now, compiling a list of all the threatened and endangered species that may have a range that intersects with the property.   I’ll be posting the status sheets and information on the endangered birds, mammals, plants, amphibians and fish.  I’ll also be listing which of the threatened species we have discovered finding sanctuary on our property.  Hope there are a lot of success stories to tell… 

I can start with our first “success” story – the Whip-poor-will.  This bird, though rarely seen, continues to drive us crazy at night as it continually hoots it’s very loud and mournful cry, seemingly throughout the night. 


The Whip-poor-will is usually found in areas with a mix of open and forested areas, such as open woodlands or openings in more mature, deciduous, coniferous and mixed forests. It forages in these open areas and uses forested areas for roosting (resting and sleeping) and nesting. It lays its eggs directly on the forest floor, where its colouring means it will easily remain undetected by visual predators.  Although Whip-poor-wills were once widespread throughout the central Great Lakes region of Ontario, their distribution in this area is now fragmented. The Whip-poor-will migrates to Mexico and Central America, where it stays throughout the cold Canadian winter. A couple of interesting notes – Whip-poor-will chicks seem to hatch near full moons, giving parents more light for foraging so they can supply the extra energy demands of their rapidly-growing brood.  Whip-poor-wills only call at dusk and on cloudless, nights.   We’ll have to check that out the next time we are kept awake by this bird.