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Enjoy the Sounds of Nature

Updated: Apr 9, 2019

When exploring outdoors, humans heavily rely on their sense of sight. A lot of visitors ask naturalists, “Where are all the animals? I never see any!”

red-winged blackbird
Photo by Chris Cheng

Wild animals can be very sneaky. They use camouflage to hide from predators and stay hidden. Some may be super high in the trees covered by leaves. Others may be in their dens or holes in the ground. A lot of animals also prefer adventuring out at night time while we are tucked in our beds. So how can you experience these animals in nature? Try using your sense of hearing!

Sound mapping can be a fun way to keep track of all the sounds you hear outside. First, grab a journal and a pencil to write or draw your sounds, and find a nice spot to sit down and relax. It could be in your backyard, by a pond or maybe an open prairie. Draw yourself in the middle of the paper. Next start listening! Try closing your eyes and cupping your hands over your ears to capture more sounds.

When you hear a sound, mark it on the paper in the direction from where it came from. The more you listen, the more you will be surrounded by unique sounds. You may hear new types of bird calls, squeaks from a squirrel, or rustling in the grass that you would have never noticed if you used only your eyes.

sound mapping
Photo by Suzy Lyttle


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