A stay in the Black Hills of South Dakota
We’ve been chasing sounds for quite a few years and as anyone who spends any time outside knows you’re bound to run into a few birds. In fact, bird sounds are so familiar in any setting that the lack of them sends a warning signal straight to the a roughly almond-shaped mass of gray matter inside each cerebral hemisphere, involved with the experiencing of emotions. More and tells you something is wrong.
Sure, we had encountered fantastic areas while Field recording is the term used for an audio recording produced outside a recording studio. More that was teaming with songbirds and their friends and stopped to capture what we could, but our intent was not focused on them specifically, and with a few exceptions we did not know what the bird was that we were recording. It wasn’t until we spent a month living in the Described as an “Island in the Plains,” the multiple-use Black Hills National Forest has an activity for everyone. Explore the many formations, canyons and gulches, open grasslands, tumbling streams, and deep blue lakes. More of South Dakota is a U.S. state in the North Central region of the United States. It is also part of the Great Plains. More that we decided to try field recording the birds themselves.
We settled into a cozy cottage in Described as an “Island in the Plains,” the multiple-use Black Hills National Forest has an activity for everyone. Explore the many formations, canyons and gulches, open grasslands, tumbling streams, and deep blue lakes. More for the month of November and on our first day we encountered the largest flock of wild turkeys we had ever seen. Coming from New York State we were used to seeing Eastern Wild Turkeys roaming the woods in small groups. But this was an entire colony of giant, silly-looking fowl.
I quickly ran into the house gathered up the field recording gear and crept outside still plugging in and powering up. The moment the turkeys saw me they took off running. I didn’t even know turkeys could run that fast. I followed them, clumsily hurrying down the mountainside, tripping over my headphone cable, getting tangled in the XLR cable, and losing the entire scene.
Now Who’s the Turkey?
Undeterred, I went back to the house, set up the gear, and placed it by the door. Next time I would be ready. The next morning they were right in our back yard calmly scratching and pecking and just being turkeys. I grabbed the gear, smoothly went through the setup, and crept out the front door thinking I would flank them and capture them before they even knew I was there.
Not only are turkeys faster than I thought, but they are also smarter; it was November after all. Once again they took off running. This Black Hills mini-drama played out for another few days. The turkeys show up, I grab the gear, they run away and I still don’t have a sound. Now I was determined.
Getting to know some Birds
Obviously chasing the birds wasn’t going to work. It was time to set up a field recording rig. I mounted the A high resolution adaptive handheld multi-recorder. recorder and external battery on a tripod, plugged the Due to the narrowness of their forward sensitivity, shotgun microphones are commonly used on television and film sets, in stadiums, and for field recording of wildlife. into the recorder, and mounted it to its own tripod. I then connected my android phone to the A high resolution adaptive handheld multi-recorder. using the The Portacapture Control is an app that provides operability with the same user interface as the touch panel on Portacapture X8. app.
I set the rig up early in the morning, baited it with some nuts and berries, and sat back to wait – and wait, and wait, and wait. Where did they go? The next day I ran into a local who has lived on the mountain for about 50 years. I explained what I was trying to do and he told me to get some cracked corn, they can’t resist it.
I baited the area with the cracked corn and by day two, I had a yard full of turkeys being recorded in 192kHz/32-Bit Stereo. They came back to visit throughout the day, each and every day for the remainder of our stay. One morning we looked out the sliding glass doors and saw the biggest Tom of the group peaking inside, watching us and asking to be fed.
By the time we left the Black Hills, we had developed an appreciation for the turkeys and their quirky charm, we were bitten by the birding bug and can’t wait to record more. You don’t need to be a field recordist to enjoy interacting with wildlife. There are a lot of research findings that show that a simple walk in any There are many different types of greenspace. When considered collectively as a wider green infrastructure, they can create an extensive and powerful recreational, cultural, and community facility, improving environmental quality and health, as well as providing diverse and species-rich habitats. The term ‘urban forest’ is often used to describe greenspace that brings all the benefits of the natural environment to... More has therapeutic benefits. And one of the key factors is the presence of birdsong. There are over 800 different species of birds in the United States, go find a few of them.