Listening to a Continent Sing

the companion website to the book by Donald Kroodsma


Eastern Oregon: Prairie City, Malheur National Forest, Picture Gorge

June 13, 7:31 a.m.

Sunrise at 5:09 a.m.

Download the Recording

White-throated swifts fly about the canyon here at Picture George in the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument. What aerial acrobats and swift fliers they are, wheeling in and out among the rock crevices, calling loudly, a shrill, twittering jejejejejejejeje, beginning excitedly and then falling, both in frequency and loudness. From a distance, with the shrillness of their calls lost in the wind, my "canyon wren sensors" fire, based largely on the descending pattern of the sounds.


The white noise of Bear Creek, just west of Prairie City, Oregon.


Photo by Brian L. Sullivan