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Re: Solstice Chorus

Subject: Re: Solstice Chorus
From: "Ray Mansell" BCTess
Date: Sun Jun 23, 2013 1:32 pm ((PDT))
It seems a similar story here, about 80 miles south of you in the Hudson
Valley. You might try asking one of your state agencies, or VINS in
Manchester. You might also check the results of the annual Great Back Yard
Bird Count at

I suspect whatever answers you discover will be less than encouraging.


On Fri, Jun 21, 2013 at 12:58 PM, John Crockett <> wrote:

> **
> I have been noticing all spring that the number of singing birds in our
> vicinity has been dramatically down this year compared to previous years. I
> don't know if this is true for the area in general or just around our
> house, but the absence of many of our regular singers (especially veerys
> and wood thrushes) has been conspicuous. I've been waiting for the solstice
> to document it, because I started last year to record the dawn chorus on
> the morning of the solstice.
> I posted a 1-minute clip on soundcloud with the result.
> The first 30 seconds is from last year, and the second 30 seconds from
> this morning. I recorded for three hours both years. These clips both come
> from approximately 6:00 am EDT. The chorus usually begins around 4:15 and
> ends by 7:00. I chose these clips in part because they are not masked by
> one bird vocalizing very close to the microphones. Last year a catbird and
> this year a robin drowned out large segments of the recording.
> Both clips were recorded using a home-built boundary array based on EM172
> capsules. The 2012 clip was recorded on a Sony MZRH1 minidisc recorder and
> the 2013 clip on an Olympus LS-11. I usually run the LS-11 on low
> sensitivity, and the MZRH1 on high sensitivity, so I have raised the level
> of the second recording to make them roughly comparable, probably within a
> dB or two. The location and orientation of the microphones is the same both
> years. The hiss is not microphone noise but two streams that run through
> the property.
> I am really puzzled by this decrease in singing bird activity this year
> and wonder if others are experiencing the same thing.
> John
> John Crockett
> Westminster, Vermont

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