Saturday, April 11, 2015

Fox Sparrow Season

Charles River at Charles River Peninsula just after dawn
It's fox sparrow season. If you don't get out in the early morning to hear them sing now you will have to wait a whole year until they pass through again. I had seen a pair foraging a week earlier at the CRP but no song ever came. This morning was different.

I'd stopped to capture some phoebe song (amidst loud ringing song sparrow and robin choruses) and there in the brush, kicking up leaf cover, was a lone fox sparrow singing while it foraged. Not singing loudly or consistently enough for a good solo recording, but a nice addition to the overall songscape.

Further down the path I found what I was hoping for. A male perched in a low tree singing repeat choruses. I initially mistook it for a house finch (I'm used to more "slide whistle" in fox sparrow songs) but after a few concentrated listens its identity was clear. It sang until it chased off a competitor. Of particular interest, two notes at the beginning of each phrase that sound suspiciously tufted titmouse-like.

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