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Recording the Araripe Manakin, With Gerrit Vyn

Near the city of Crato in northeastern Brazil lives a critically endangered little bird — the Araripe Manakin. It’s a little larger than a sparrow, it’s beautiful, and it lives on the slopes of a very small area in the Araripe Plateau. And because the Araripe Manakin wasn’t discovered until the... read more »

Topics & Themes:  photography, recording

Searching for the Araripe Manakin, With Gerrit Vyn

Gerrit Vyn is a sound recordist for the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. He recently traveled to northeastern Brazil’s Araripe Plateau in search of the Araripe Manakin, a beautiful white bird with dark wing-tips and tail-feathers — and a deep red hood. The Araripe Manakin is critically endangered, in... read more »

Topics & Themes:  human interaction, photography, recording

Costa Rica Winter Sunrise

Explore the magical sounds and sights of Costa Rica with BirdNote in March 2018.Learn more and register here. And experience this:On a winter morning in Costa Rica, a colorful choir welcomes the day. A pair of Bay Wrens sings a brisk duet just before sunrise. Perched in the upper canopy of the... read more »

Topics & Themes:  sound, vocalization


The peace of the vast Guyanan jungle is abruptly broken with the dawn chorus of male Capuchinbirds, one of the most bizarre birds in South America. The singing male bows forward, then suddenly stretches to his full length, raising a monk-like cowl of feathers around his naked blue-gray head. The... read more »

Topics & Themes:  breeding display

Green Birds and Brown Birds in the Tropical Rainforest

The canopies of the world’s tropical rainforests are green year round. So are many of the birds within them, from parrots and hummingbirds to trogons and jacamars, such as this Rufous-tailed Jacamar. Being green in the tropics helps birds blend in to their surroundings, which is especially... read more »

Topics & Themes:  plumage

Do Parrots Name Their Chicks?

Parrots are among the smartest of birds. But are they clever enough to know each other by name? Research conducted by ornithologist Karl Berg suggests the answer might be yes. Berg’s studies of Green-rumped Parrotlets — such as the one pictured here — indicate that every parrot in a family... read more »

Topics & Themes:  nesting, vocalization

Meet the Sungrebe!

     Sungrebe female © Allan Hopkins                                        ... read more »

Thick-billed Euphonia - Deceitful Mimic

Northern Mockingbirds can learn to mimic the sounds of just about any bird. They mimic to show off, not to deceive. But this Thick-billed Euphonia, a tiny songbird in South America, employs what scientists call “deceitful mimicry.” When frightened by a predator near its nest, a Thick-billed... read more »

Topics & Themes:  ecology, ornithology