Do you recall when you were a young Saturday-morning birdwatcher, learning the intricate lessons of predator-prey relationships? Twitiavis superciliosis is a small, animated yellow bird, native to Southern California. It's particularly susceptible to predation, and so has developed a complex series of alarm calls. Against all odds, Twitiavis eludes its predators to sing its song another day.
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Tweety Bird: Twitiavis superciliosis
Written by John Kessler
This is BirdNote!
Remember when you were a young Saturday morning birdwatcher, learning the intricate lessons of predator-prey relationships and familiarizing yourself with the sounds of highly urban birds? Let’s return today, to the alarm call of a small, animated, yellow bird native to Southern California, Twitiavis superciliosis. Popular for a wide, melodious vocal array, its delicate song is not easily forgotten.
[Song of Twitiavis Superciliosis]
But this bright and noisy bird is particularly susceptible to predation, and so has a developed a complex series of alarm calls. Listen as the bird reacts to the approach of its chief predator, the cat.
The bird, now suspicious, increases the intensity of its call.
[Second alarm call]
The cat quickly makes its move…
[Sounds of cat’s attack]
…as the bird issues its most desperate alarm call.
[Third alarm call]
And yet against all odds, Twitiavis eludes its predators to sing its song another day.
BirdNote’s producer is John Kessler. I’m Michael Stein.
Clips from Tweety Bird and Sylvester the Cat, from Warner Bros.
Producer: John Kessler
Executive Producer: Dominic Black
© 2014 Tune In to Nature.org September 2018 / 2020 Narrator: Michael Stein