Martyn Stewart's calling is recording the sounds of birds and nature. He describes some of the rewards of working in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge: "It is a great place to go record birds and animals. You know generally that once you point your microphone at a nesting bird or a bird that's hopping through the tundra, it's going to be pristine. You haven't got a leaf-blower or an ATV or a plane flying over the top of you ... It's just a beautiful place." Learn more about Arctic Refuge conservation. There's more about Martyn himself at naturesound.org.
Martyn Stewart II
This is BirdNote!
[Call of the Rough-legged Hawk, run throughout]
Martyn Stewart’s calling is recording the sounds of birds and nature. Martyn told us about the challenge of recording the calls of this Rough-legged Hawk, which was nesting in the foothills of Alaska’s Brooks Range.
“How do I obtain bird recordings? A great deal of patience, that’s the essence basically, being in the right place at the right time, being really lucky …. The ‘accidental bird recordist’ is basically what I try to call myself …”
Today, he describes some of the rewards of working in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
“It is a great place to go record birds and animals. You know generally that once you point your microphone at a nesting bird or a bird that’s hopping through the tundra, it’s going to be pristine. You haven’t got a leaf-blower or an ATV or a plane flying over the top of you, and you know it’s going to be unspoiled. When I was a kid, I used to record sound and to get one pristine hour of recording it would take probably 3-4 hours to get that sound and today in present climate and conditions that one hour takes you about 2,000 hours to obtain now. Such is the environment that we are in. And so going back to Arctic National Wildlife Refuge… that’s like being back as a kid again ... It’s just a beautiful place.”
Thank you, Martyn. For BirdNote, I’m Frank Corrado
Written by Adam Sedgley
Interviewed and written by Adam Sedgley.
Rough-legged hawk recorded by Martyn Stewart.
Producer: John Kessler
Executive Producer: Chris Peterson
© 2007 Tune In to Nature.org 2017 Narrator: Frank Corrado
Revised from ID# 083107martyn02KPLU stewart-02