Monday, March 29, 2010

"Dawn Chorus"- Song Birds

Spring has arrived and with it come a "Dawn Chorus". That chorus consists of many different animals sinigng their “love songs”. The birds normaly are the first one to “sence, or feel” spring has arrived. They get excited to establish a home, attract a mate to help their species continue to survive. As local resident birds grear up and sing for spring, migents slowly arrive adding to the dawn chorus. It is beautiful in the early morning as they all “chime” in. To some it is a muttled mess of sounds, but to other’s a beautiful chorse.

In this blog I have listed some of the more common "Dawn Chorus" birds you might hear around you.

I have also attached a PDF document listing Bird Songs or Calls. This guide will help you identify bird songs by using human words to help you remember and recognize many of the birds that sing around you. To open the document click on the "Dawn Chorus" - Song Birds tital, it will open a google document you will be ablet to download, save and / or print off the docement.  Then you can use it to help you identify many of the singing Birds in the "Dawn Chorus".

Birds and their Songs:
Black-capped Chickadee = "Chick-a-dee-dee-dee" or "Phoe-be"
White-breasted Nuthatch = "Hank Hank" or "Nurt Nurt"
American Goldfinch = "Potato chip, Potato chip-chip" [done in flight] or "Per-chickory, Per-chickory"
Eastern Meadowlark = "Iowa is beautiful" or "Spring of the Year"
Red-winged Blackbird = "Conk-Lar-REE!" or "Oak-a-REE!" Call note a harsh "CHECK!"
Northern Cardinal = "Wa-cheer Wa-cheer, Birdy-Birdy-Birdy, Wheat, Wheat, WheatBlue Jay = "JAY, JAY, JAY
Scarlet Tanager = robin like notes slower and with a slight bur "Chip-bur, Chip-bur"
Brown Thrasher = each part of the song is repeated 2 or 3 times
Eastern Bluebird = soft single or double notes a "Cha-we" or "Chawe-we"
American Robin = "Cheerily, Cheer-UP-CHEERlo" or "Cheerily, Cheerily, Cheer-UP-CHEERAlee"
Killdeer = "Killdee, Killdee"
Indigo Bunting = "Sweet Sweet, Chew Chew, Feet, Feet"
Mourning Dove = "WhoooOooo-who-who-who"
White-throated Sparrow = "Sweet Canada Canada Canada" or "Poor Sam Peabody Peabody"
Ruby-crowned Kinglet = "See See See, To, To, To, Think of Me, Think of Me" very loud for a small bird
Rufous-sided Towhee = “Drink Your Tee"
Tufted Titmouse = "Peat, Peat, Peat" or "Peter, Peter, Peter"
Bobwhite = "Bob White or toot-sweet!"
Yellow Warbler = "Chit chit chit Chit CHit-Tweet" or "Sweet Sweet SWEET I'm so Sweet"
Common Yellowthroat = "Wichity, Whichity, Whichity, Which"
Ovenbird = "Tea-Cher, Tea-Cher, Tea-Cher"
Eastern Phoebe = "FEE-bee"
American Crow = "CAW, CAW, CAW"
Northern Oriole = here, here, come right here, dear OR flute-like, disjointed series of notes
Cedar Waxwing = trill (hp, rapid) always flocks OR zeee-zeee-zeee… (hp trilled)
Chimney Swift = chit-chit-chit-chit... (rapid staccato) OR twittering (rapid)
Chipping Sparrow = chipping trill (mechanical, dry, rapid)
Common Nighthawk = Pee-eet (nasal) OR beeer
Gray Catbird = meeeee-ew or maaaaaanh (nasal) OR varied mocker-like phrases (seldom repeated)
House Finch = zreee! (included in varied, warbling song)
House Sparrow = chiddik, chiddik (dry, non-musical)
House Wren = stuttering, gurgling, musical, i at end
Purple Finch =  Warbling – varied phrases, fast, lively, brief
Rose-breasted Grosbeak = cheer-up, cheer-a-lee, cheer-ee-o (malodic) AND chink
Song Sparrow = Maids, maids, maids-put-on-your-tea-kettle-ettle-ettle OR Hip, hip, hip hurrah boys, pring is here! OR Madge, Madge, Madge pick beetles off, the water’s hot

Here is a link to the Field Checklist of Iowa Birds:

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