Date: 7/9/18 1:10 pm
From: Sally Nelson <snelson4242...>
Subject: [obol] Re: If a bird sings in the forest and no human is there to hear it....
Dear OBOLinks:

Lars' description accords with what I experience daily west of Creswell.
Since I have somehow got into the habit of considering 5 a.m. wakeup as
"sleeping in" my daily bird lists usually begin well predawn, even this
time of year. The first 20 or so vary somewhat through the seasons, but
today, for example, Violet-green Swallows, Robins, Tanagers, Swainson's
Thrushes, Downy Woodpecker, both Chickadee sps., Steller's Jays,
Red-Shouldered Hawks, Purple Finches, Pewees, and Orange-crowned Warbs, and
Crows were the first to vocalize during my "open the window and have the
first cup of tea" phase of birding.

There is a definite quiet spell as the sun actually clears the hills. Then
Black-headed Grosbeaks hit the feeder, House Wrens start singing, and the
day has officially begun.

My heard-in-order lists go back literally decades. But enough already!

Sally Nelson

On Mon, Jul 9, 2018 at 10:51 AM, Lars Norgren <larspernorgren...>

> I live in the middle of extensive woods, and sometimes don't make the
> commute to Portland until mid day. I've noticed that after the dawn chorus
> there are long periods of quiet. Then some bird will start to vocalize, I'm
> not sure if it's necessarily singing, and in the course of 90 seconds many
> other unrelated species will also vocalize. Eventually every species within
> earshot seems to have joined in. I've never taken notes: Is it some
> particular species or set of spp that initiates things? It seems like
> non-passerines make up part of the mix as well. This is a year round
> phenomenon, not just spring.
> I don't know if I've had the experience away from home. When in a
> birding mode I'll probably move on in the face of two minutes' quiet. The
> silent spells preceding said sonatas may last 20-40 minutes. Someone at
> this year's Willamette Valley Bird Symposium gave a talk that was at least
> tangential to this topic, but when I tried to describe it during a break
> his dismissal was thunderous. I assume this brief,semi-spontaneous chorus
> is widespread, even universal. I would say it it's characterized by calm
> and leisure, never involves alarm calls or anything that could be construed
> as mobbing response. The vocalizations come from all quarters, never a
> focal point. It's extremely pleasant to experience as I'm texting and
> responding to customers. Not a new phenomenon, it's been bonus wallpaper
> the whole 2 1/2 decades we've lived here.
> Certainly has implications for point counts. Last weeks BBS along
> Hwy 6 involved almost continuous traffic noise at 11 stops, yet at one of
> those stops I detected a dozen species, more than double the average count
> at the others. Lars

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