I began this blog in the fall of 2012 to chronicle my journey of learning to listen and record natural sounds. I’m a field biologist by training, and have spent most of my life outside, camping, hiking, backpacking, cross-country skiing. And although I avoid noisy places, like most people, I had never really stopped to listen to my surroundings. My background is in the social behavior of mammals, so naturally I was drawn to their sounds, but I’ve also learned a new appreciation for the sounds of birds and insects.
And water. Have you ever listened to how each stream has its own sound? Or how the sound changes as you move up or downstream?
What I’ve learned so far is that hearing is one of our most important senses. Through sound we monitor our environment – sounds alert us to danger, help us find food, help us communicate. Sounds can fire us up or calm us down. Bird noises in particular are one of our best indications of what is going on around us – alarm calls tell us to pay attention, a dawn chorus tells us its time to get up. Yet we have filled up the world with the sounds of our machines, and in many cases, rather than try to reduce the noise, we tune it out or mask it with yet more noise. It is getting harder and harder to find places free of the sounds of human machines. Peace and quiet are becoming things of the past.
So come with me on this journey and explore some sights and sounds of wild North America. Most of my recordings focus on the American Southwest – but I hope it doesn’t stop there! My goal with this blog is to encourage you to stop and listen, if just for a moment, at some of the wondrous sounds of the wild. I hope the sounds and stories evoke memories and awareness, so that there will always be quiet, wild places.
I discuss the equipment I use and other aspects of nature sound recording under “Equipment.”
My recordings of nature sounds from the southwestern US are available in Albums.
You can reach me at [email protected]
Disclosure: I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC and B & H Photo Associates Programs, affiliate advertising programs designed to provide means for a site to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to either Amazon.com or bhphotovideo.com. I do this not only to reimburse some of my time for creating this blog, but also to provide information on products that might be useful to sound recordists.