How did the scarlet ibis arrive in their backyard?I would like to know how the scarlet ibis arrived at Doodle's house and why?

Expert Answers
bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The beautiful red bird which made a solitary appearance at Doodle's house in James Hurst's short story, "The Scarlet Ibis," had probably flown off-course due to sickness and the storm which followed shortly after. Doodle's family had never seen such a bird before, and after looking it up in "the bird book," it was determined that it was a scarlet ibis--a tropical bird that lived between Florida and South America. (The story is presumably set in North Carolina, Hurst's home state.) "A storm must have brought it here," Doodle's dad decided. Since the bird fell dead from the tree, we can also assume that it was extremely tired and/or sick. Symbolically, of course, the author placed the beautiful, red bird in the story to compare it with the unique Doodle, who later died bloody in the swamp from which the bird had come.

coachingcorner eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In 'the short story 'The Scarlet Ibis' there had already been a hurricane previous to the prediction of a storm and the hot weather. The family had been discussing the likelihood of another storm at mealtime round the table and wondering why the adults had not yet heard any rainfrogs croaking. Then, a strange croaking noise came from the yard. In the tree was a big red bird the size of a chicken. It could not stay at the top of the tree very long as it was obviously diseased or exhausted. It is possible it came in on the winds of the first hurricane and it could have been dying of thirst and the drying up of the water in the hot weather. When it falls down through the branches and dies in front of them, it is of course presaging (foreshadowing) the main death in the story.Here is a link to some other hints:

jomirjo | Student

the scarlet ibis was driven by a storm.