Whistle-Pig Sighting

Woodchuck (Marmota monax) taking refuge in a t...

Groundhog climbing a tree


“Woodchuck,” Whistle-Pig,” and “Land Beaver” all are names used to describe our native Marmota monax the groundhog. I saw one the other day crossing our two-lane highway, AR 23 North, the “Pig Trail Scenic Byway.” I had seen this rodent before and wondered  “what animal was that?”. It is now clear what or who he is. He is a “Whistle-Pig.” That is what the mountain folks nicknamed him because when frightened by some predator, he will stand erect on his hind legs and emit a high-pitched whistle to alert his fellow pigs or hogs of danger.

“How much wood would a woodchuck chuck

if a woodchuck could chuck wood?”

“A woodchuck would chuck all the wood he could

if a woodchuck could chuck wood!”

Being the ever so curious person that I am, I did some research and found that groundhogs also can climb trees. Yes, they can climb trees to escape from predators. I wrote in an earlier post about gray foxes having the same ability. “Whodathunkit?” They also are very good swimmers.

Wildlife sightings are daily occurrences for Maggie and I. Not a day goes by that we don’t see at least one deer or rabbit. Our trusty “dawg” Chef keeps healthy by chasing squirrels and deer daily. Communing with nature is awe-inspiring.

Pileated Woodpecker

Pileated Woodpecker

Listening to our resident pileated woodpecker brings a smile to our faces. Listening to  coyotes harmonizing on the far ridge is not frightening to us. Their chorus is enlightening to us. When you get chance, head out to the woods and simply inhale the inspiring world of nature around you. We always get our daily “fix” down here in Lizard Holler

Click on coyotes or pileated woodpecker above and be directed to a site where you can hear what they sound like…cool…


About Boston Mountain Chef

Food is my passion. Every day is a fresh new recipe waiting to be savored!
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1 Response to Whistle-Pig Sighting

  1. Linda Kaiser says:

    I get to see alot of “critters” where I live too, Larry, but the coyotes are alot closer than a ridge to me! They used to scare me but not anymore. Have I become “countrified” in my old age? Why yes, I think I have! “City life” holds NO APPEAL to me anymore! I’ve only been to a WalMart ONE TIME in the past year! & it’s only 30 miles away in Paris, Texas! I’d rather shop locally anyway…where everybody knows my name! :0)

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