This is a very chirpy piece of news for all avid bird-listeners. Bird enthusiasts will soon be able to hear birds in a library dedicated to bird sounds and songs. Senior scientists at Salim Ali Centre for Ornithology and Natural History (SACON), Coimbatore, have begun a study to decipher the bird songs and bird calls of Indian birds. They are planning to set up a bird song library at the Centre that will have a record of over 100 bird songs and calls to begin with. “By June, the library would be set up,” said Senior Principal Scientist, P Pramod. According to The Times Of India, along with the forest department of Coimbatore circle, they also plan to release a CD – Bird songs of Nilgiris Biosphere Reserve.
Ornithologists said that there are strong possibilities of birds communicating with each other and the nature around them. Explaining the various types of bird calls, Pramod says birds communicate constantly with each other and sometimes, they might even be trying to give us warning signals. “Each bird’s song has a different characteristic with a unique frequency , amplitude, syllable formation. Their songs are generally for merriment or melancholy. But many birds have a means of communicating with each other. They send out mating calls, feeding calls, warning calls, territorial messages,” said Pramod. “Some birds such as babblers keep chirping to keep their group intact,” he added.
One of the students at SACON has registered for a PhD under the topic ‘Bird acoustics in Coimbatore’. “While I started out recording just the calls of a bird named Common Iora, I ended up recording other birds as well. For us it is just some random sound and chatter. But it is in fact a language through which they communicate with each other. I was interested to decipher it and find out what they communicate with each other,” said Divya Priya, a student researcher at SACON.