song recognition apps

Subject: song recognition apps
From: brian fleming <>
Date: Wed, 15 Oct 2014 20:21:17 +1100
On 15/10/2014 4:44 PM, Martin Butterfield wrote:
I find this intriguing and suspect that Allan's answer is completely
accurate *if* you wish to identify every bird that one hears,

I have put that qualification because of my use of a Software app for iPad
(Shazam) that can listen to about 30 seconds of a piece of music and
identify it in many cases.  It isn't very good on classical music but on
pop and the sort of music on ABC Classic FM Drive  my guess is that it is
correct at least 90% of the time.  My guess is that there are several
orders of magnitude more CDs around than there are species of birds in
Australia (especially if seabirds are excluded).

Of course some birds have many different calls (without worrying about
mimicry).  But my guess is that matching a pretty high proportion (lets say
80% as a guess) of calls recorded in the bush to an authoritative source
(eg the BOCA tapes or a selection of Xeno-Canto calls) would basically be
quite achievable.

The feeling I get from coverage of this issue by a North American
researcher is that he wasn't game to proceed until he had got to a
situation of about 99% matching.   In other words the choice was perfection
or nothing.  I don't have the kit or knowledge to try this, but suspect
that if a greater level of "no match" was accepted something could be done
quite readily that would be way more useful in the field than the sample
calls in (for example the Morcom App.).


Martin Butterfield

On 15 October 2014 15:27, Allan Richardson <> wrote:

Of course there are orders of magnitude more people loading their music into their devices than birdos loading calls. But a short list rather than an absolute ID would enable you do do your call-matching much more readily. Until you came up against one of the many excellent mimics <sob>.

Brian Fleming

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