Listening to a Continent Sing

the companion website to the book by Donald Kroodsma


Southern Illinois: Ferne Clyffe State Park, Goreville

May 27, 5:05 a.m.

Sunrise at 5:37 a.m.

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As I sat on the cliff, this Louisiana waterthrush came to sit next to me, and sing. Up close, I hardly recognized him, but gradually I worked through the clues he offered.

You can hear him somewhat distant at 0:03, but then he lands right next to me, belting out four songs. Listen to those little twitters on the end of the first song. Very nice. Typical Louisiana waterthrush, beginning with several downslurred whistles, followed by jumbled chips and chirps.


Northern cardinal, blue-gray gnatcatcher, worm-eating warbler, tufted titmouse.


Photo by John Van de Graaff