I heard some bird songs this Spring and found an app that will help me identify them.
I enjoyed this on many levels:
One, I was with my sister who I love.
Two, as I played my recording to the app, it showed a voiceprint of the recording as it went along. Why the voiceprint? Dad was an engineer and endlessly curious about stuff. At one point I'm pretty sure we had an oscilloscope in the basement. I was watching life meet science.
We laughed at ourselves when the app faithfully recorded our accidental conversation along with the playback of the birdsong. Wonder what it made of us unlikely birds?
Three, I found hidden treasure. How many of these birds have sat quietly in the past while I walked unknowingly beside them? I caught a glimpse (and a quick pic) of a Redstart a couple of years ago, but just the once and just a glimpse. I never have seen the warblers. It's like someone just gave me a box of chocolates.
I don't really care about their names, I don't really expect I'll remember them or even train myself to recognize them in the future. I'm not that devoted a birder. While solving a mystery can be satisfying to the intellect, my greater joy rose from the company, it rose from the laughter, from the heart-warming connections with the past, and from the discovery that my world was bigger than I knew.
If you are wondering about the app it's Merlin Bird ID from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. I watch their live webcams of Red Tailed Hawks, Barred Owls and more when they are nesting. As I write this the Hawks have 3 fuzzy young which are growing fast.