Blackbird's song - an analysis

To: birding-aus <>
Subject: Blackbird's song - an analysis
From: Vicki Powys <>
Date: Sun, 27 Jul 2003 14:59:28 +1000
A note for Simon and others:

I should add that the Blackbirds that I recorded at Sunny Corner NSW were
not numerous, it took some stealth on my part to get close enough to record
them, and I had to go looking for them in dank and gloomy habitats e.g. in
the pine trees and hickory wattles at the local reservoir, and in a
neighbour's very overgrown garden.  The Blackbirds were not conspicious by
any means, in that locality generally.  I have one recording where one bird
begins to sing more vigorously when a second bird is heard calling in the
background, e.g. there are more embellishments to the song phrases.  So "the
more the merrier" maybe.  At Sunny Corner there are no Noisy Miners and no
Indian Mynahs (yet), although there's plenty of Red Wattlebirds in
spring-summer, and Pied Currawongs of course.  There was three inches of
snow on the ground at Sunny Corner yesterday, high country like I said!

It would be interesting Simon for you to note just which bird species may be
aggressive towards Blackbirds, to shed a bit more light on this fascinating
Blackbird Song discussion!

Vicki Powys
Capertee Valley, NSW

on 26/7/03 3:21 PM, simon starr at  wrote:

> Having opened this can of worms I think I should respond.
> It appears that Aussie Blackbirds are quite capable of singing their little
> hearts out with the best of them(and why wouldn't they in a place called
> Sunny corner!).
> However much to my dismay I am yet to hear it.I have a resident pair of
> Blackbirds around home(in northern Victoria) and Mr. Blackbird just doesn't
> perform.His song never lasts more than a few phrases at best.This may be
> related to low population density and the open nature of the habitat here
> but if others are noticing the same??
> I think your conclusion is right that Blackbirds in Europe sing more,are
> bolder and sing for longer.Perhaps in Melbourne for instance they are
> subject to much more aggressive competition from Mynas?,Red
> Wattlebirds?,Noisy Miners?,etc etc. In English suburbia I can't think of
> many similarly aggressive competitors.
> Thanks for a great bit of research,
> Simon Starr,
> PS The brolgas however have been putting on a good show here
> recently.Calling,dancing,bowing and cow-pat tossing!!

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