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Spotify Wildlife: Finding Bird, Amphibian and Insect Calls Online
While I’ve written about listening online before, I haven’t really covered how much a curious person can learn from nature just by listening to various wild melodies. With the huge popularity of sites like Pandora and Spotify, I thought it would be appropriate to discuss some great places to hear some of nature’s music from our wildlife.
Here are a few resources that I’ve found myself using–but please, if you know of others, share them in the comments!
- eNature has a section on the site called “Bird Audio” that allows you to select different calls to play. They also offer various free bird call ring tones. Once you’ve studied all these it may be fun to take their bird call quiz… I’m too chicken (ha!).
- Birdjam not only offers up free songs to listen to, but also has playlists for certain habitats, as well as apps you can download for a small fee. I love the idea of bird call playlists by habitat!
- The Cornell Lab of Ornithology offers free bird call noises and downloads with an exchange of an email address. They are always sending helpful information, so it’s a worthy trade.
These suckers are a little tricky to track down. I’ve found it useful to search your area for “frog calls” based on state or region and not just the generic search. This works with bird calls too… Also—if you’re already interested in frog calls and identification, I highly recommend getting involved with Frog Call USA (if you’re in the U.S., that is).
- Cleveland Museum of Natural History has Ohio’s frogs and toads
- U.S. Geological Survey’s Midwest Region has downloadable calls
- The Western Soundscape Archive has one of the most comprehensive lists of amphibians.
- The Cornell Lab of Ornithology also has an impressive amphibian downloadable list for what it’s worth.
- I heavily rely on Virginia Herpetological Society’s amazing website for ID/calls so finding your local chapter may be the way to go!
- Music of Nature – Master species insect list. (Hat tip to About Insects for reminding me of this.)
- Nature Songs has a few of the generic songs.
- Bug bytes by the USDA would be a bit of a better resource if it was more user friendly.
While I haven’t tried a “frog call channel” on Pandora, I will say there are a few albums of nature sounds on Spotify if you look hard enough. A few of the compilations worth searching for on Spotify are:
- “Sounds of North American Frogs” (keeping in mind this collection came together in 1958 so the scientific names are sadly incorrect in a few cases)
- “Wild Tones Bird Calls”
- “Song birds: Parks and Gardens” – or another variation
I have been unable to locate insects songs on Spotify, but hopefully some will be available soon. I’ve also been silly and made animal playlists by themes (one of my favorites is “Reptiles and Amphibians”) with songs that include a species in their title.
Do you listen to wildlife sounds? What sites do you use?