Tuesday 2 May 2017

Dawn chorus in the Glenborrowdale, "Atlantic rain forest" and world wide.

Next Sunday, 7th May,  is "International Dawn Chorus Day" so where ever you are you can take part just Google IDCD and you will find an event near you.

This morning I was out in the wood (Glenborrowdale RSPB Reserve) by 4.30 am; the birds start up at least an hour before sunrise.

Sunrise, Glenborrowdale
On a bright, windless morning like this birdsong has been estimated to carry 20 times as far at dawn as at mid-day. It was our resident breeding species that kicked off first, the wrens, robins, great tits, blackbirds and a greater spotted woodpecker drumming.

Then the migrant warblers usually start up, the chiffchaffs, wood and willow warblers. But this morning there were no warblers. Perhaps it's been the cold arctic winds in the last week that has slowed them down getting here.

The chorus has male birds proclaiming their territories and females selecting the fittest males, the strongest singers, for mating. You don't even need a wood just step outside at dawn with a coffee to enjoy a free natural concert. In urban areas the chorus tends to start earlier to avoid the background noise of traffic and aircraft. This is a good example of evolution in real time!

1 comment:

Michael Mable said...

Just returned from a fabulous hoiday at Balcary Bay in Galloway, with bedroom windows facing on to the bay - the weather was warm which meant that the windows stayed open most of the time, and gave us the mixed pleasure of being roused at about 3:00 am by the commotion from the oystercatchers feeding close by due to the high tide. I decided I couldn't fight it and got up to take some pre-dawn photographs. Wonderful being out in it - even if the midges left me with a few bites to remember the occasion by.