Wednesday, April 8

Tanagers, Buntings and Grosbeaks : songs

Male Northern Cardinals have a repertoire of about 10 songs.
(Apr, NJ)

1st phrase

2nd phrase

(Apr, NJ)

The song may end in a chirr (Apr, PA).

Female Northern Cardinals also sing (Feb, PA).

The female song is usually weaker and less stereotyped than the male's song (Mar, PA).

This is a pair singing in a duet; the quieter song is the female, even though she is nearer the microphone, hidden in a bush while the male is high in a tree (Mar, PA).

male song at 10-14s

female song at 14-18s

male song at 19-21s (with Song Sparrow)

Another duet, the female ending her song with soft chirrs (Mar, PA).

Each male Scarlet Tanager has a repertoire of 10 or more syllables that are re-arranged in innumerable sequences. The song sounds like a robin with a sore throat.
(May, NJ).

Occasionally the chick-burr call is incorporated into the day song (June, PA).

A migrant singing in mid-September (NJ).

The dawn song of the Scarlet Tanager is subtly different from the day song. The phrases are separated by longer intervals, but are strung together in long sequences, with the chick-burr call a regular component (30 minutes before sunrise, May, PA).

portion of dawn song

This is a second, faster and more sustained version of the dawn song, but the phrases are still delivered more slowly than the day song. This bird sings 84 phrases in the first minute of the recording, using 17 different syllables ranging from once to 11 times, including 2 chick-burrs (30 mins before sunrise, June, NJ).

Scarlet Tanagers often sing while migrating at night in the spring. This was one of five birds I recorded singing one night in May, PA.

The Summer Tanager song has a combination of clear and burry phrases, and sounds like a Rose-breasted Grosbeak with a sore thoat, or a Scarlet Tanager that's had singing lessons (May, NJ).

American Robin for comparison (May, PA).

Summer Tanager dawn song, again longer strings of wider-spaced phrases (5.25am, June, NC).

The Rose-breasted Grosbeak song has been described as like a robin that's had singing lessons (May, RI).

(May, NJ).

Each Indigo Bunting is identifiable by its single song, which consists of paired notes chosen from a species total of about 100.
(June, NJ)

(June, PA)

The Blue Grosbeak song is a fast warble and again each bird sings only one song (May, DE).

(June, NJ, with Indigo Bunting).

Dickcissel, two males counter-singing (June, NJ). The Dickcissel is a rare breeder east of the Appalachians.

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