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Late Night Hooting Or Chartter?


First of, I do not remember much of this experience but I have enough information regarding it from what my mom has told me when she would also experience it a long with me.

This was a while ago back in my country El Salvador. I was around 4-5 years old when we still lived over there before moving to the United States to be reunited with my dad.

I would always sleep with my mom and my sister, because if we slept separate it would be too far. The house we own over there was really big and the rooms were separated by a big center living room. My room was in front of the center living room facing the outside dining room/patio type, still inside the house just with open rails of metal as windows but very nicely decorated. That room was towards the main entrance hallway and my sister's was facing a small dining area across the center living room to the right of my room. Then there was my mom's facing the small dining room area, or gathering living space we had, that my sister's room faced. The rooms were pretty far from each other.

Since my dad was here in the United States it was only my mom, my sister and I living in that big house. That's why we both slept with my mom.

This experience didn't happen every night. It happened once in a while but when it did happen I would always be terrified and would not like to get up to go to the bathroom. I would wake my mom up or wait until it would stop. I'm saying wait until it would stop because I'm about to get started with the whole thing.

In El Salvador there are a lot of beliefs and people there believe in bad spirits. For example this one bad spirit they call "El cucu rucuy" 'English trans- coo coo roo cooy". The name is based on the noise the spirit makes. People there believed the spirit is an owl and some say that they have seen it. They have describe him as a big black owl with big sharp claws, almost as tall as a human with blood shot red eyes. They say that if you stare at it straight in the eyes, he will lift off the ground and shoot straight at the person looking at it and peck and scratch their eyes out.

Reason why my sister and I would sleep with my mom was because we occasionally would hear the noise the bird would make. My mom's room had two windows. One was a big double window that was to the left side of her bed with metal decorations on it so nothing could get in or out except bugs of course but not a big animal or human or child. It was a narrow metal window cover. Then she had a small window that would open up but also had a metal window cover for safety. That small window was behind where my mom and us would lay our heads so if you looked up at the ceiling the window was in top of our head.

That window would also face this tunnel type trail surrounded by trees across the fence of our yard and in the yard my mom had a fruit tree which was very big. That tree is where the owl would stay and make the animal noise it did. When I would hear it I would get so scared and hug my mom or cover my ears. The noise the animal would make also sounded like people chattering very weird then it would get loud and make that cucu rucuy noise out of nowhere. My mom would say a prayer with us to make it go away and after 4 times of the prayer, the noise of the animal would suddenly stop and all we would hear then would be the crickets.

We also believed in this bad spirit because there was an incident that happened to this one guy who lived two towns away from where we lived. It was said that he heard the owl but was not a big believer on what people would say. So he heard the owl and decided to go outside to check it out and prove people wrong in the bad spirit believing. He then later found in the morning pecked at with no eyes in his backyard. From that day on people believed it was the owl spirit. I'm not sure if it is actually true but many people believe it and also because of that incident that occurred.

I found it really strange that even though I was that small I could hear it. After a few prayers the noise would also stop.

I hope you guys enjoy my informational reading of experiences I have gone through. Remember, this is what people believe back in my country and it happened to me but I don't know if it's proven true or not because of the incident that occurred.

Let me know if you guys have any questions.

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The following comments are submitted by users of this site and are not official positions by Please read our guidelines and the previous posts before posting. The author, Sanchez_92, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will participate in the discussion and I need help with what I have experienced.

RedWolf (31 stories) (1292 posts)
7 years ago (2016-09-13)
In your case I can understand because the belief in the legend was going around for many years.
In my case it was just a bunch of stupid people who actually believed there was a wild animal that is not indigenous to my area was loose.

Another myth on Long Island was the Montauk Monster. My vet and I agreed that they were large Pit Bull or a Mastiff dogs. A vet would know the anatomy of a dog even if it was partially decomposed.

Sanchez_92 (7 stories) (52 posts)
7 years ago (2016-09-13)

Yeah there is many people who believe in many sayings and legends I personally don't know what to think because I've heard it but never seen it. It might of just been an owl or so but there's legends out there so I much rather just have precautions about it.


RedWolf (31 stories) (1292 posts)
7 years ago (2016-09-12)

Many years ago when we lived in our first house there were rumors that a cougar was on the loose not too far from me. This rumor went on for several years. All the police and animal control could find was paw prints. One year police and E.S.U. Were looking in neighborhoods along with animal control because they wanted to remove the threat. Now they found these "cougar" tracks right next to a State Park full of deer for about a week for 2-3 years. They never thought to go into the park and never found any dead deer with bite marks on them so it was just someone playing a prank. It was a well thought out one because they had friends and neighbors call animal control saying they saw the cougar so they wouldn't be caught by police (no caller I.D.). So for 3 years some ignorant people thought it was true and an Urban Legend was born albeit a very short one.

Sanchez_92 (7 stories) (52 posts)
7 years ago (2016-09-09)

I couldn't agree with you more. This writing is based of of what I have heard and the praying with my mom was to make the noise of the animal stop which actually worked and make it go away. I'm not 100% sure the incident happened because from what my mom has told me she did not see anything of the guy on the news what so ever. I also never heard of anyone seeing the animal besides the guy two towns away. My writing is based off on what my mom remembers and what I can remember as well.
Bibliothecarius (9 stories) (1088 posts)
7 years ago (2016-09-08)
Greetings, Sanchez.

I'm a little lost, here, and I'm sorry if it is a misunderstanding on my part. I don't understand the connection between your mother's prayers to protect you from owls which can't get through the decorative metal window covers and people talking about a guy from two towns away who had his eyes pecked out for not believing in evil spirits.

I have absolutely no wish to be insulting to El Salvadorian customs or folklore. Northern Europeans tended to associate black cats with evil spirits, and the Aswang of the Philippines is an evil version of the flying fox native to those islands. Associating scary supernatural ideas with nocturnal creatures is a common to a wide variety of cultures. The barn owl (which you can hear by clicking on the first sound file at this site: sounds absolutely terrifying if you're not expecting it, but I think the species you're describing is the Pacific Screech Owl (which sounds positively tame by comparison: Both of these owl species can be found in El Salvador.

Creatures which make sounds or move around in the darkness when people cannot see tend to scare us, thus they get mythologized to a point. Owls, due to the structure of their feathers, are almost silent as they glide through the night, so when they do call out, it's shocking to discover that they're there (I found a 3-minute video explaining owl wings & feathers, which will save me 15 minutes of typing:

I can see how El Salvadorians in general might find owls to be scary, birds of ill omen, or associated with malicious spirits. However, I don't think that a story about a guy two towns away for your home town is evidence to support the general belief. That just sounds like an urban legend to perpetuate the folklore which is part of the culture. Unless someone has more concrete data than "everyone knows that this happened; they all say that it did happen, so it must have happened," I'm going to agree with your own skeptical observation, "I'm not sure if it is actually true." Frankly, I thought the part of the narrative in which you described local customs/beliefs was very interesting.


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