Bluebird

Bluebird
Return of the Birds

 
 
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Chapter 7 of Wake-Robin, by naturalist John Burroughs. 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. Intro music: Kai Engel Walking Barefoot on Grass Outro music: The United States Army Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps: United […]

Rock Creek, Piney Branch, and Wilderness beyond the Capitol

Rock Creek, Piney Branch, and Wilderness beyond the Capitol
Return of the Birds

 
 
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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. 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 […]

Birds’ Nests, Part 1

Birds’ Nests, Part 1
Return of the Birds

 
 
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Beginning Chapter 4 of Wake-Robin, by naturalist John Burroughs. A detailed look at the nesting habits of Red-headed Woodpeckers, Yellow-bellied Woodpeckers, Pine Siskins, Cedar Waxwings, Robins and  Indigo Buntings. Burroughs marvels at the dirty jobs parent birds must endure to keep their nests clean for their young. Any parent who has changed a dirty diaper […]

The Lower and Upper Ironworks and the Abandoned Town, Tahawus

The Lower and Upper Ironworks and the Abandoned Town, Tahawus
Return of the Birds

 
 
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The second half of the third Chapter, the Adirondacks. Continuing with a timeless bit of bird therapy, Burroughs wakes from a nap in the woods to find himself under scrutiny of the wood birds. Visiting Lake Sanford, fishing in Nate’s Pond and a 12 mile hike to the Lower Ironworks with views of Mount Mercy, […]

The Adirondacks

The Adirondacks
Return of the Birds

 
 
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The start of chapter three of Wake-Robin by naturalist, John Burroughs. Burroughs and a group of fishing companions depart for the Boreas Reach near Lake Placid, New York. Burroughs demonstrates his skill as a trout fisherman, earning the respect of their guide. Hunting at night on an open lake, the starlight reflected in the center […]

The Forenoon Chorus of Finches, Thrushes and Warblers

The Forenoon Chorus of Finches, Thrushes and Warblers
Return of the Birds

 
 
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This episode concludes the second chapter of Wake-Robin, by John Burroughs. Lounging on a couch of moss in the shady woods, the gentleman rambler and naturalist allows his attention to wander from species to species. He points out the the Ruby-throated Hummingbird and the song of the Rose-breasted Grosbeak and Scarlet Tanager. He marvels at […]

Reverence for the Hermit Thrush, Disdain for the Kingbird and Pewee, and Banter with the Ovenbird

Reverence for the Hermit Thrush, Disdain for the Kingbird and Pewee, and Banter with the Ovenbird
Return of the Birds

 
 
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Nineteenth-century naturalist and essayist, John Burroughs gives a detailed account of the Hermit Thrush’s song. For him, it is the finest sound in nature; the peace and deep solemn joy only the finest souls may know. Strolling the undomesticated wilderness, greeted by the Wood Pewee and Eastern Kingbird. Documenting the curiosity and confidence of the Ovenbird.

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

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

 
 
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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 […]

The Scarlet Tanager and the Dog Days of August, and, Finally, the Silent End of the Season

The Scarlet Tanager and the Dog Days of August, and, Finally, the Silent End of the Season
Return of the Birds

 
 
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The Scarlet Tanager and the Dog Days of August, the Peewee’s Prowess on the Wing Comically Contrasted with the Chipping Sparrow’s, the Uncanny Agility of the Merlin, the Red-Shouldered Hawk’s Death-defying Speed and Dizzying Ascents, and, Finally, the Silent End of the Season

Yellow-billed and Black-billed Cuckoos, White-eyed Vireos, and a Side-by-Side Comparison of the Hermit Thrush and Wood Thrush Bird Songs

Yellow-billed and Black-billed Cuckoos, White-eyed Vireos, and a Side-by-Side Comparison of the Hermit Thrush and Wood Thrush Bird Songs
Return of the Birds

 
 
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Naturalist John Burroughs quotes ‘To the Cuckoo’ by William Wordsworth. He considers in detail the White-eyed Vireo’s skilled mimicry in her mid-summer song and how it may rival the mockingbird’s own ability. Burroughs shares observations on how elevation might impact and effect the distribution of species in the Town of Highlands, New York.  And concludes […]

Welcoming the Birds of March, April and May

Welcoming the Birds of March, April and May
Return of the Birds

 
 
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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 American Robin  Bluebird  Phoebe bird  Kingbird  Northern Flicker 1 Northern Flicker 2 Tufted Titmouse  White-breasted Nuthatch  Eastern Meadowlark  Northern Bobwhite Ruffed Grouse Barn Swallow  Greater Prairie Chicken  Great Horned Owl […]

Episode 18: Epilogue – 149 Years Later

Episode 18: Epilogue – 149 Years Later
Return of the Birds

 
 
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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 or archive.org. The Creative Commons and public domain contains a wealth of images, music and more. The images used in these show notes link […]

Episode 17: In praise of John Audubon, with a couple backhanded compliments and a correction

Episode 17: In praise of John Audubon, with a couple backhanded compliments and a correction
Return of the Birds

 
 
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John Burroughs praises Audubon’s life’s work, yet questions some of Audubon’s assertions about comparisons between the Louisiana Waterthrush’s song and the European Nightingale’s, the Bobolink’s and the Blue Grosbeak’s. Burroughs appreciates the volume of Audubon’s catalog, and offers two of his own to add to the collection. Click the links below for details about the […]

Episode 16: An Invitation

Episode 16: An Invitation
Return of the Birds

 
 
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Burroughs invites you to become a birder, describing the thrill of seeing the natural world around you through a new lens.  Click the links below for details about the bird vocalizations used in this episode from the Macaulay Library at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology: Wood Duck Yellow-rumped Warbler Black-throated Green Warbler Red-eyed Viero White-eyed Viero […]

Episode 15: The Bluebird

Episode 15: The Bluebird
Return of the Birds

 
 
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Click the links below for details about the bird vocalizations used in this episode from the Macaulay Library at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology: Eastern Bluebird European Robin Western Bluebird House Wren 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 […]

Episode 14: Strolling through Rock Creek and Piney Branch, Wilderness beyond the Capitol with the Blue-grey Gnatcatcher, Yellow-breasted Chat and Cardinal

Episode 14: Strolling through Rock Creek and Piney Branch, Wilderness beyond the Capitol with the Blue-grey Gnatcatcher, Yellow-breasted Chat and Cardinal
Return of the Birds

 
 
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Click the links below for details about the bird vocalizations used in this episode from the Macaulay Library at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology: Wood ThrushVeeryKentucky WarblerBlue-grey GnatcatcherNorthern Water ThrushYellow-breasted ChatCardinal GrosbeakRed-headed Woodpecker 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 […]

Episode 13: Spring in the Capitol, the Sylvian Chorus, Bluebirds, Robins, Snowbirds, Meadowlarks, Sparrows and Crows

Episode 13: Spring in the Capitol, the Sylvian Chorus, Bluebirds, Robins, Snowbirds, Meadowlarks, Sparrows and Crows
Return of the Birds

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

Episode 12: Snowbird nests, Grosbeak nests, Hummingbird nests, and the Baltimore Oriole builds the best nest of all

Episode 12: Snowbird nests, Grosbeak nests, Hummingbird nests, and the Baltimore Oriole builds the best nest of all
Return of the Birds

 
 
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Click the links below for details about the bird vocalizations used in this episode from the Macaulay Library at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology: Blue Grosbeak Black-and-White Warbler Blue-headed Vireo Mourning Warbler Red-tailed Hawk Baltimore Oriole Intro music: Kai Engel Walking Barefoot on Grass Outro music: The United States Army Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps: […]

Episode 11: Birds’ Nests and the Lengths Parent Birds Go to Keeping the Place Clean

Episode 11: Birds’ Nests and the Lengths Parent Birds Go to Keeping the Place Clean
Return of the Birds

 
 
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Click the links below for details about the bird vocalizations used in this episode from the Macaulay Library at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology: Cedar Waxwing Red-headed Woodpecker Yellow-bellied Sapsucker American Robin Black-capped Chickadee Indigo Bunting Intro music: Kai Engel Walking Barefoot on Grass Outro music: The United States Army Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps: […]

Episode 10: Hiking to the Upper Ironworks and Indian Pass, Taking the Pulse of Mother Nature

Episode 10: Hiking to the Upper Ironworks and Indian Pass, Taking the Pulse of Mother Nature
Return of the Birds

 
 
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Click the links below for details about the bird vocalizations used in this episode from the Macaulay Library at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology: Black-capped Chickadee Cedar Waxwing Ruby-throated Hummingbird 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 […]

Episode 9: August in the Adirondacks, Deer Hunting at Night

Episode 9: August in the Adirondacks, Deer Hunting at Night
Return of the Birds

 
 
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Click the links below for details about the bird vocalizations used in this episode from the Macaulay Library at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology: Purple Finch Pine Siskin Vesper Sparrow White-throated Sparrow American Robin White-breasted Nuthatch Intro music: Kai Engel Walking Barefoot on Grass Outro music: The United States Army Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps: […]

Episode 8: Partridge Drumming, the Cowbirds’ deception, and so many Warblers in the Barkpeelings

Episode 8: Partridge Drumming, the Cowbirds’ deception, and so many Warblers in the Barkpeelings
Return of the Birds

 
 
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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: Ruby-throated Hummingbird Hermit Thrush Rose-breasted Grosbeak Scarlet Tanager Purple Finch Canada Warbler Cowbird Ruffed Grouse Common Yellowthroat Mourning Warbler Chestnut-sided Warbler Black-throated Blue Warbler Black-throated Green Warbler Blue-headed […]

Episode 7: Reverence for the Hermit Thrush, but None for the Pewee

Episode 7: Reverence for the Hermit Thrush, but None for the Pewee
Return of the Birds

 
 
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The heavenly Hermit Thrush. Commentary about the cowardly Eastern Kingbird. The Wood Pewee’s plainness. Praise for the OvenbirdClick here to listen to Episode 1.Click here to listen to Episode 2.Click here to listen to Episode 3.Click here to liste

Episode 5: Scarlet Tanager and the End of the Season

Episode 5: Scarlet Tanager and the End of the Season
Return of the Birds

 
 
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The scarlet tanager and the birds of summer. Observations of the hawk and the end of the season. Click here to listen to Episode 1. Click here to listen to Episode 2. Click here to listen to Episode 3.   Credits & Links: Click the links below fo

Episode 4: Veery, Grey Catbird and a Snake Encounter

Episode 4: Veery, Grey Catbird and a Snake Encounter
Return of the Birds

 
 
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The princely disposition of the wood thrush, the cool notes of the veery, the pretense of the gray catbird and a black snake picks the wrong spot to relax.  Click here to listen to Episode 1. Click here to listen to Episode 2. Click here to listen t

Episode 3: Welcome Back Cuckoos, Warblers & Thrushes

Episode 3: Welcome Back Cuckoos, Warblers & Thrushes
Return of the Birds

 
 
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Click here to listen to Episode 1. Click here to listen to Episode 2. 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: Yellow billed Cuck