Listen

Click on the arrows to hear these birds, mostly recorded on a mobile phone!

If you have a recording you’d like identified, send it to me by e-mail to bookings@learnbirdsongs.co.uk and I’ll let you know what I think it is. Also, I’d be pleased to receive recordings that you would be happy to donate to help other people learn. There are lots of gaps and some of the recordings are not that good; hopefully we can improve the collection over time.

Black redstart
Call
These weet-tack-tack calls are similar to the stonechat and common redstart
Song
An unusual noise to hear coming from a power station, ruined castle or in this case, a hospital!
Blackbird
Song
Often described as mellow, it’s not repetitive like the song thrush
Alarm
This is the ‘chinking’ alarm call – maybe there is an owl or cat nearby
Alarm
This is the ‘rattling’ alarm call
Blackcap
Song
Typically powerful, fluty song
Song
This recording also has some of the harsh ‘tack’ alarm calls near the beginning
Blue tit
Song
Typical song of the male
Song
Another variant but still easily recognisable as blue tit
Brambling
Call
This call is difficult to pick out, but quite distinctive
Bullfinch
Call
You could probably whistle these soft notes yourself
Buzzard
Call
I’m hoping someone will tell me if this two-tone call is from a young bird or adult
Call
And what about this rather different call?!
Canada goose
Call
The honking calls are more musical than those of the greylag goose
Cetti’s warbler
Song
It’s a short, but explosive song
Chaffinch
Song
Imagine a bowler in a cricket match running up to the crease, and bowling the ball
Song
Songs vary between individual birds but the rhythm is still the same
Call
The standard ‘pink’ call – easily confused with a great tit
Song
Chaffinches have a wide range of notes that they repeat for for several minutes at a time
Chiffchaff
Song
The standard rhythmical chiff, chiff, chiff…
Song
This bird has some double notes
Song
This song includes some some quieter, more hesitant notes
Call
This confident call is an alarm call – and could be described as ‘almost monosyllabic’
Calls
Here you can hear both recently fledged young and the alarm notes of an adult
Coal tit
Call
These high-pitched calls are typical of the coal tit (note the singing great tit in the background)
Song
Although only a half-hearted attempt, this song is much higher pitched than the great tit
Collared dove
Song
Collared doves typically have a three-note song
Coot
Calls
These loud, single notes are typical of the coot
Corn bunting
Song
Often described as a bunch of jangling keys
Crossbill
Song
A complex song which incorporates the chupping call notes
Call
Their ‘chup, chup, chup’ calls made either from a perch or in flight can be heard above other woodland noises
Dartford warbler
Call
A harsh, angry call
Dunnock
Song
Tweedly, tweedly, tweedly?
Song
Different, but still: tweedly, tweedly, tweedly?
Firecrest
Song
High pitched, accelerating and rising in pitch
Song
A different (slower) bird, but still the same basic format
Garden warbler
Song
An attractive and full song with relatively short breaks between phrases
Song
Note the lack of powerful fluty notes typical of the blackcap
Call
These are the harsh alarm notes
Goldcrest
Song
High pitched, jerky and ending with a slight flourish
Call
As high pitched as the song but without the structure and flourish
Goldfinch
Song
An attractive twittering mixture of hurried notes
Great spotted woodpecker
Call
The sharp ‘pick’ carries well through the woodland canopy
Great tit
Song
A typical, lively two-note ditty
Song
Two notes again, but to a different rhythm
Song
Yet another two-note song
Song
A more varied song, but still lively and repetitive
Green woodpecker
Call
Loud notes with a hint of the laughing quality so characteristic of the territorial song
Greenfinch
Song
A bold series of trills at different pitch
Call
This bird sat perched making this whining call for ages
Hawfinch
Call
A poor recording, but most of the ‘seeping’ and ticking notes are typical hawfinch calls
Herring gull
Calls
These are adult birds in full territorial mode
Call
These are the begging calls of a young bird
Hobby
Song
This strident call is usually given by an adult around the time the young leave the nest
House sparrow
Call
Probably the closest a male house sparrow gets to a song!
Jackdaw
Calls
These are adult birds – do they say ‘jack’ (for jackdaw)?
Call
Young birds have a slightly different call, but still say ‘jack’
Jay
Call
The typical angry, tearing, screeching sound
Lapwing
Song
These wonderful notes are given in a swooping display flight over the nesting ground
Lesser redpoll
Call
These alternating buzzing and trilling notes are usually given in flight
Lesser spotted woodpecker
Call
This is the ‘pee, pee, pee’ call
Drumming
Fast and sustained (not the shorter, slower and quickly fading version that the great spotted gives)
Drumming
A different pitch created by a different branch but still the typical lesser spotted drum roll
Drumming
Yet another location, but the same duration of drums and intervals between them. There is a second bird replying in the background.
Lesser whitethroat
Song
Each phrase ends in a characteristic rattle on one note. Often the introductory warble is missing.
Linnet
Calls
Not the best of recordings but the cheerful chirps and twitters are characteristic
Call
Single, double or multiple chirps, often uttered in flight
Little grebe
Song
This far-carrying whinnying call passes for a territorial ‘song’
Marsh tit
Call
Marsh tit calls are often just two short notes, the second being a clipped ‘chu’; this bird adds some additional notes at the end
Mute swan
Wing-noise
Of the three swans that regularly occur in the UK, only the mute makes this noise in flight
Nightingale
Song
A rich variety and ever-changing series of phrases, usually made from dense undergrowth
Nightjar
Song
This bird churred for a full three minutes – and ended with this characteristic wing-clapping
Raven
Call
Characteristic gruff croaks
Redstart
Song
Is this like a cross between a chaffinch and a robin? Better suggestions welcome!
Call
A double ‘weet-tack’, with variants
Reed bunting
Song
Simple, faltering counting?
Reed warbler
Song
A methodical, repetitive, constant series of notes that can continue for a long time – difficult to get a word in edge-ways
Song
This one has more variety but still has the basic reed warbler tone of voice
Robin
Song
The typical contented, relaxed song
Rook
Call
Each ‘caw’ is an individual note, even if it’s repeated
Sand martin
Call
Unremarkable, dry buzzing notes, here uttered in flight
Siskin
Song
Hurried, broken-glass twittering and in this case with a good long wheeze!
Song
Another bird – no wheeze here
Call
Typically whining notes
Skylark
Song
A continuous torrent of notes from a song flight, a perch or in this case the ground!
Song thrush
Song
A competent songster, that clearly repeats notes within each phrase
Sparrowhawk
Call
This mewing in usually associated with a recently fledged family
Spotted flycatcher
Call
These little kisses are easy to miss
Starling
Song
A very varied song, sometimes with mimicry – some good whines here
Song
… and some nice cracking notes
Song
… plus various whistles!
Tawny owl
Song
The typical hooting sound made either to attract a mate or to mark out the territory. Thanks to Julian Clegg and BBC Radio Solent for this recording
Call
These are the squeaky calls of young birds begging for food
Teal
Call
The male has a distinctive sonar-like piping
Call
The female’s call is like a small, high-pitched mallard
Tree pipit
Song
The ‘seeya seeya seeya’ notes carry a long way – here interrupted by a blue tit!
Song
A slightly longer recording. The tree pipit sings either from a tree or in flight, rising up from, and then down to, a tree
Treecreeper
Call
Thin, high-pitched calls: ‘treee – treee -treee’?
Turtle dove
Song
We go to Martin Down to find the purring of the turtle dove
Whitethroat
Song
Typically short and scratchy
Song
Longer phrases like this are usually given in a short song flight above scrub
Willow warbler
Song
Does this bird sings its name: ‘willow willow willow’?
Wood pigeon
Song
Although this bird is a bit faltering, the song is usually a 5-note cooing rhythm: take two coos Taffy, take two coos Taffy, take two coos Taffy, take
Wood warbler
Song
The main song is a trill, said to be like a spinning coin coming to rest
Song
This very different song is a series of ‘tew’ notes
Call
The call is reminiscent of the second song, but each call is a separate note
Wren
Song
A powerful and competent delivery of a well-practised series of trills and churrs
Yellowhammer
Calls and song
This recording combines the short calls (perched) with the traditional ‘little bit of bread and no cheese’ song, ending with the flight call