A cool photo of a California Gull would have been even cooler with sound or video!
I never actually saw the bird--but being able to capture the song was thrilling. I had recorded dozens if not more than 100 songs, calls, and videos over the past years, but hadn't done much till the Piha video--and to be honest, hadn't done much since. So tonight I decided to sit down and go through the video I took in St. George this past weekend and pull out some of the better and more interesting recording for your enjoyment.
This was the first recording of the trip, a Northern Mockingbird at 12:30 AM in pitch black 100' from our camp site on the Beaver Dam Slope:
While hiking in the Beaver Dam Wash this Blue Grosbeak occasionally let out a volley and I managed to pick it up once:
While hopefully waiting for a Spotted Owl to start barking, this Canyon Wren kept filling the slot canyon with its unforgettable song:
Just after the sunset a number of Hermit Thrushes began singing--as if trying to one up the wrens:
But the real prize cam about 30 minutes after sunset when a Spotted Owl rang out from the cliffs above us. I wasn't sure my camera would pick it up, but was pleased with what I captured:
The following morning I woke up to a dawn chorus of Brewer's Sparrows very close to camp. I walked over and stood about 20' away from 5-10 birds that were buzzing and trilling away:
A couple hours later we found ourselves at a small pond along lower Kolob Terrace Road where I was able to record a Yellow-breasted Chat from just a few feet away as it poured out all kinds of chirps and whistles:
This Summer Tanager was a stable all three mornings we birded the ranch--it sand from the top of a cottonwood in the housing area almost non-stop. I had hoped to catch the call notes of this very cool bird, but only hear one call all weekend--so I settled for this our last morning there:
I didn't expect to make this recording on this trip, but a male Evening Grosbeak came flying into the trees near me at Lytle Ranch our last morning. It chirped every couple seconds (the hard CHIT note) while a White-winged Dove bellowed in the background:
And finally I got a mediocre recording of a Black-chinned Sparrow from the highway as we passed over Utah Hill. I captured an awesome recording last month near Virgin--but accidentally left my camera on silent mode so actually missed the whole episode--so this was a small consolation:
And that's it. I was very happy to add 11 songs to my collection this past weekend--and really need to sit down and go through the rest of my stuff from the past couple years to see what I can pull out. I bet I have close to 100 species recorded--its just a matter of actually doing the footwork.
My shabby recording make me appreciate the skill and expertise that professional recordists have. Xeno-canto.org is full of great recordings, from all over the world--and form world class recordists. Check it out if you have some free time--or become addicted if you want to improve those audible skills!
Great post Tim. I love recording birds, as difficult as it is. Can't wait to hear what else you come up with.
This comment is a little late - I've been thinking about getting into song recording it seems recording bird songs/calls would also be a helpful way to learn and memorize them.
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