In the Hemlocks, a Guided Tour of a Primitive, Undisturbed Forest and the Avifauna Living There

Red-eyed Vireo

Return of the Birds
Return of the Birds
In the Hemlocks, a Guided Tour of a Primitive, Undisturbed Forest and the Avifauna Living There

The start of chapter 2, In the Hemlocks. Author and gentleman rambler, John Burroughs, begins guided tour in the hemlocks. Years before, townsfolk, tanners, and lumbermen attempted in vain to tame and exploit the grove. But nature proved uncooperative and the effort abandoned. By his account, the spirit and energy of the wilderness repaired and rejuvenated the injuries and offer refuge to all. We meet the Red-eyed Vireo and hear his contented song. For Burroughs, the Bobolink’s song expresses hilarity; the Sparrow’s, faith; the Bluebird’s, love; the Catbird’s, pride, White-eyed Vireo, self-consciousness; Hermit Thrush, spiritual solemnity; the Robin’s, a military tone. 

In-depth reviews of the Snow Bird and Winter Wren’s song and demeanor, the Veery’s mellow expression, the unfortunately named Blackburnian Warbler and the Northern Parula. 

The Creative Commons and public domain contains a wealth of images, music and more. The images used in these show notes link back to the contributors.

Return of the Birds - In the Hemlocks with the Red-eyed Vireo

Credits & Links:

Click the links below for details about the bird vocalizations used in this episode from the Macaulay Library at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology:

Red-eyed Vireo

Warbling Vireo


Vesper Sparrow

Eastern Bluebird

Gray Catbird

White-eyed Vireo

Hermit Thrush

American Robin

Snow Bunting

Winter Wren 


Blackburnian Warbler

Northern Parula

Intro music: Kai Engel Walking Barefoot on Grass

Outro music: The United States Army Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps: United States National Anthem (The Star Spangled Banner)

Download Wake-Robin by John Burroughs in e-reader format at

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