General Category > Hackensack Videos

Northern mockingbird tries to sing with a tape (4-26-91)


I went through a 29-year-old VHS tape and found a video I shot on my full-size camcorder on the roof. It shows a mockingbird parked on an old TV antenna and he's singing (assuming it's a "he"). In the background, you can hear the sound of another mockingbird (or the same bird, as I imply in my comments) that I recorded on tape the year before. I'm playing it to see if the visible bird responds to it.

Boy, did he ever! In some parts he repeats what he hears. In others, he adds to it. In still yet others, it sounds like he's making suggestions that don't get reciprocated. In any event, he seems to be transfixed on this unseen bird. I like when he appears to tilt his head to listen.

The tape is pretty shaky because I've got a monster 500mm lens attached to the camcorder so I can zoom in on his head  - specifically, his beak - and I'm trying to follow his head as I try to balance this unit on my shoulder, but after I take the lens off near the end, it's better.

I don't get to engage in avian experiments very often, so I found this one fascinating and I'm glad I found it.

BTW - I played the VHS tape onto a large-screen TV and video'd that with my little digital camera.


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