Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Confusing blackbirds

I’d intended to write about a great idea (the book book – maybe tomorrow), but instead I’ve just amused myself for five wasted minutes in the garden, whistling imitations of my three or four local blackbirds’ songs.  (I’m a good whistler.)
They’re good whistlers too, and seem to be conducting conversations, across a range of a few hundred yards.  After my abject failure to transliterate the strange bee/donkey/ventilator Sound, I’m not going to go there: if you want to hear them, get your own blackbird-equipped garden.  (I should, in this day and age, be possessed of the means to record, store and upload soundclips, but I'm not.)
I know, it’s territorial marking and mating invitations.   So I’ve probably caused untold disruption – in fact, they seem to have gone quiet while they think about it – and I can expect them down the chimney any time later.



  1. Tim, or may I call you Tippi? - I think you may have started something you didn't intend to there...

  2. You should be thankful you haven't got a smart phone with a birdsong app (like I have - it's called Chirp). They are being criticised for annoying & distracting from the general workaday activities of the birds, their use apparently causing much avian confusion. Tweets have been exchanged I gather.
    (I have to admit to confusing friends, on a walk, with the cuckoo on my app. Last November)

  3. I only know that nightingales should be quiet for gods sake ...

  4. I'm not sure about the territorial thing. I think they sing for the sheer pleasure of it. And why not? They are wonderful! (Our resident blackbird can sing a first inversion of a major chord. Impressive, eh?)

  5. Z, I'm still here, unpecked. Big flies in the house, though - have the birds sent in their advance guard?

    Richard, I seem to remember that you don't have chimneys in your new home, so you're probably safe. Watch it, though - they have their birdy eyes on you.

    Mago - I've never knowingly heard one, so can't comment. But if you're right, can't a bit of genetic engineering turn them into dayingales?

    Frances: that's nothing - mine does perfect transcriptionsof Messiain (sp?) Or is it the other way round?