Listening to a Continent Sing

the companion website to the book by Donald Kroodsma


Appalachia: Breaks Interstate Park and vicinity, far western Virginia

May 28, 5:32 a.m.

Sunrise at 6:14 a.m.

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Here is a pace typical of dawn singing for an eastern towhee, with 12 songs in this minute. He is just awaking, and no doubt will build to a more intense dawn chorus in which he will consistently alternate different songs.

Now, 45 minutes before sunrise, he sings in the following sequence: A A A B A B B B B B B B. The A song is a typical drink-your-teeeee, but the B song is more of a simplified your-teeeee, without the first introductory note.


American robin, indigo bunting, another eastern towhee.


Photo by John Van de Graaff