Listening to a Continent Sing

the companion website to the book by Donald Kroodsma


The High Rockies: Guffey, Colorado

June 12, 6:40 a.m.

SUNRISE at 5:36 a.m.

Download the Recording

Sometimes you make do with what you have, and that's the case with this recording. I am very fond of it, no matter how poor it is by many standards. This is the first lesser goldfinch I ever heard, and he's singing above my sleeping son in Guffey, Colorado, our bicycles lying nearby.

This goldfinch sings quickly, with mimicry so imbedded into the flow of his song that I find it almost impossible to ferret it out. But take those first two calls; sounds like a house sparrow, doesn't it? House sparrow again at 0:06. Robin calls jump out at me at 0:37. But it's tough going, to be sure.


Crowing roosters, traffic . . . a pretty lousy recording!


Photo by Brian L. Sullivan