The sound is insect-like and primal. The buzzy "peenting" call of a chunky upland shorebird, a male, his opening salvo of spring and impending, albeit brief, romance. In strict terms of biology: The passing of his genetic material to the next generation, so that other chunky timberdoodles will follow.
And a rite of spring for Ijams Nature Center: Searching for the aerial displays and raspy calls of American woodcocks hidden in the muddy fields, the sodden grass, at twilight along the Urban Wilderness Trail at Forks-of-the-River.
Thanks to all who joined us Saturday evening. And thank you, Hannah in the bright pink coat!
Fellow searcher Jason Sturner writes: "A nature-filled weekend in Knoxville: male frogs and toads vocalizing for the ladies; woodcocks in courtship flights beneath the clouds and stars; a gorgeous Fox Sparrow amid a flush of juncos; fresh layers of sun on swelling tree buds; hepatica blooming on a woodland hill; the air an arrived exhalation of the coming spring."
Valarie Johnson (red coat) linked a video.
Text and photo by Stephen Lyn Bales