Alan Dalton post's birding diaries and original artwork from Sweden. Established in 2006, this now long running blog is now a complete overview of my birding experiences. As an artist I greatly enjoy sketching birds in the field and you will find a wide selection of that work here, from fieldwork to finished paintings. I am very passionate about my artwork and try to depict birds in their natural habitat, as I see them in the wild. My artwork is for sale and can be viewed at http://www.alandalton.net/
As regards to my photography, since 2008 I have used a Nikon D90 DSLR camera coupled with a Sigma 150-500mm OS lens for since March 2012 for bird photography, all previous images being digiscoped. Regarding sound recording, I have been usung a Telinga Stereo Dat Mic and parabol to record birds in the field, coupled to a Marrantz 661 digital recorder, a superb piece of kit. Interest in butterflies, dragonflies and damselflies has recently seen the accquisition of a Sigma 150mm macro lens. I hope you enjoy the blog and please feel free to leave comments or contact me at alandltn@gmail.com

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Eagle Owl in Display; Sound Recording

Spent the evening awaiting the Eagle Owl male at a local breeding site. The bird displays every evening and eventually it appeared, though remained back within a stand of trees, calling every eight or nine seconds. The local Blackbirds were going berserk throughout! I had the Telinga with me a duly recorded the bird. Also here are some other recordings from this Evening of Blackbird and Great Tit. This time I had the recorder on the correct setting for the parabol and I was blown away by the sound it gathered. Distant birds could be heard clearly with the headphones, indeed, I could hear birds and identify them that were not possible to hear at all by naked ear! I learned a second lesson today straight away from a singing Blue Tit which was right in front of me. I recorded the bird and the volume was LOUD through the earphones, the recording on replay was distorted in places of high pitch, which is when I realized what the 'Recording Level' dial was for. I lowered the dial to 4 and when a Great Tit popped up close by I got a perfectly clear recording that gave a beautifully clear sonogram. Second big practical lesson coming on day two in the field then! Eventualy I sat and waited for the Eagle Owl, enjoying listening through the parabol greatly, picking up distant Skylark on passage to boot. Stock Dove could be heard clearly displaying at about 120 metres! Eventually the owl appeared, though at the back of the woods, not sitting out at the front and remaining at perhaps 350 metres range. The recordings were still good, the bird clearly audible and identifiable! After a few minutes the bird stopped calling and didnt fly overhead on it's usual route and did not call again. I contented myself with recordings of the local Blackbird population and got more familiar with the equipment. Results below, converted to MP3 files in Audacity.



The display call of a male Eagle Owl here, a rather simple note that can nevertheless carry a couple of kilometres on a still night...




I had been track a pair of Mallard that were flying past when the Eagle Owl started to call at 6.16pm., that recording above..




Other birds had earlier been the subject of the parabols attention. Here a distant chorus of Blackbirds, a very beautiful song indeed...




Here another Blackbird after dush at first giving subsong, before spotting me and giving the species classic alarm call...




Here a Blackbird scolds from the ground, often a sifn that a ground predator, such as a cat, is close by...




Here a Great Tit calling close by, listen for the low call of Grey Heron after the third call...




1 comment:

Gene said...

A great post. I enjoyed the sound bites.