Thirteen birders attended Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy’s Birding by Ear: Tools and Recording class and field trip on April 24. Led by Bryan Henson, the class covered a number of tools like Larkware, Merlin Sound ID, Birding by Ear CDs, and Xeno-Canto for learning bird songs. We talked about the importance of finding a personal connection to bird sounds to help you remember them better. Different tools for recording bird sounds were discussed including smartphones, cameras and digital recorders with specialized microphones. A brief discussion of audio post processing followed the basic recording discussion.
During a short, one minute exercise the class heard more than a dozen bird songs from both common birds and freshly-arrived migrants like a Northern Parula. During the longer field trip, the class heard several dozen different birds with highlights being a Blue-headed Vireo and a Black-and-white Warbler. It was a wonderful day to be outside listening to birds.