Woodpecker





The woodpecker's screech was a sign of rain. This bird is called by two

names in Welsh which imply that it foretold storms; as, Ysgrech y coed,

the wood screech, and Caseg y drycin, the storm mare.



These names have found a place in Welsh couplets:--



Ysgrech y coed!

Mae'r gwlaw yn dod.



The Woodpecker's cry!

The rain is nigh.



Bardd Nantglyn, Robert Davies, Nantglyn, has an englyn to the

woodpecker:--



I Gaseg y Drycin.



Och! rhag Caseg, greg rwygiant,--y drycin,

Draw accw yn y ceunant,

Ar fol pren, uwch pen pant,

Cyn 'storm yn canu 'sturmant.



Barddoniaeth R. Davies, p. 61.



My friend Mr. Richard Williams, Celynog, Newtown, translates this stanza

as follows:--



Ah! 'tis the hoarse note of the Woodpecker,

In yonder ravine,

On the round trunk of a tree, above the hollow,

Sounding his horn before the coming storm.



Yellow Hammer. (Penmelyn yr Eithin).



There is a strange belief in Wales that this bird sacrifices her young to

feed snakes.





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