Fountain of Bobolinks

Bobolink Habitat photo

On this beautiful spring day, I have just one thing to say … I am so incredibly fortunate to live in an area where I can enjoy the bubbling “song-fantasias” of Bobolinks, ecstatic voices from another world! They seem a gift from heaven, a unique jewel among our native birds. Enjoy this engaging recording of four males perched near one another, spouting songs like a fountain spraying water upwards and outwards, as if partaking in a festive reunion …

Catbird Singing at the Break of Day

Ladyslipper Pond

I delight in gathering sound portraits of common species, with emphasis on depicting each bird dimensionally “in its habitat,” embedded within a pleasant mix of other nature sounds. Thus, you can imagine my delight when I encountered a Gray Catbird singing in a multiflora rose shrub next to the overflow of my beloved Ladyslipper Pond …

Meadow After Rain

Meadow After Rain © Lang Elliott

Rising once again at 4am, I gobbled down some cereal and then rushed off to meet with my friend Melissa Groo, a talented wildlife photographer who lives along the upper reaches of Shindagin Hollow. We drove down into the hollow then up again to a beautiful wet meadow at the edge of the forest. Arriving at about 5:10am, just as the birds were beginning to sing, I quickly set my soundscape microphone in the middle of the field …


Ovenbird © Lang Elliott

I rose at 4 am this morning so that I could be present in the forest when the first bird sang. I drove to a location in the hills above Shindagin Hollow and set my soundscape microphone next to the road. Water trickled softly down a drainage ditch. Otherwise it was completely quiet. Then the birds began to sing …

Wren Remembrance

Winter Wren and habitat © Lang Elliott

My favorite wren is without doubt the Winter Wren. It’s rambling, silvery song delights the ear and is quite unlike the song of any other wren. Yesterday, when I recorded the Wood Thrush in Shindagin Hollow with Beth Bannister, we reminisced about our experience ten years prior recording a Winter Wren, also in early May and almost at the same location …

Wood Thrush Return

habitat with wood thrush © Lang Elliott

Yesterday I rose early to hear the fluting of a Wood Thrush, but didn’t hear a peep. This morning, as if by magic, the songs of thrushes rained down upon the forest floor, glittering like stardust sprinkled upon the greening landscape. How enchanting and reassuring … the Wood Thrushes have once again returned!

Here Come the Birds!

Shindagin Hollow © Lang Elliott

This morning was cloudy but calm, so I went to nearby Shindagin Hollow to see if there were any new arrivals (or local species) sounding off … and sure enough there were: Black-throated Green Warbler, Black-throated Blue Warbler, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Winter Wren, Ovenbird, Blue Jay … and more!

A Symphony of White-throats

White-throated Sparrow © Lang Elliott

This morning, I rose at 4:30am and headed for Finger Lakes National Forest, arriving at about 5:15am. Birds were already singing and I headed in the direction of a cardinal, intending to get a closeup sound portrait. Instead, I stumbled upon something special: a migrating flock of White-throated Sparrows, awakening to the day in a thicket at the edge of the woods …

Thrasher Cinema Success

Brown Thrasher © Lang Elliott

Just as I was ending my field work on Sunday morning, a Brown Thrasher began singing from a patch of shrubs next to the road. I spent the next twenty minutes chasing after him as he flew from perch to perch. Finally, he settled in a tall hickory tree and put on quite a vocal performance …

A Grackle and a Finch

House Finch © Lang Elliott

Several days ago, I paid a morning visit to my friend and fellow recordist Bob McGuire (we’ve done a number of trips together). Bob’s yard is full of House Finches and Common Grackles, attracted to the abundant evergreens surrounding his home. Luckily, it was a blue-sky day, so I managed to get some usable video footage of both species, with pretty decent sound …

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