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( Originally Published 1894 )
The goat-sucker is so called from the belief long entertained that it was in the habit of sucking the teat of the goat. There are several varieties and they are remarkable for the strangeness of their cries. The Goat-sucker has sometimes been called the Night jar from its discordant note, it is also known as the Fern Owl. Mr. Wood says:-" It may be seen at the approach of evening silently wheeling round the trees, capturing the nocturnal moths and beetles; then occasionally settling and uttering its jarring cry. When flying the bird sometimes makes its wings meet over its back, and brings them together with a smart snap. It arrives in England in the beginning of May and leaves in December. The Whip-poor-will and the Chuck-will's-widow both belong to this family."