The Scuds are Singing!

It's mid-July and the scuds are singing, and I don't mean scud missiles. I mean katydids of the genus Scudderia, named after Samuel Hubbard Scudder (1837-1911), an early American entomologist. In nearby Connecticut Hill Wildlife Management Area, I'm now hearing the songs of two species: the Broad-winged Bush Katydid (Scudderia pistillata) and the Northern Bush Katydid (Scudderia septentrionalis). It is the latter that excites me most right now … [Read more...]

Kentucky Cricket Chorus

During a visit to Land Between the Lakes, Kentucky in early October of 2009, I was impressed by the rich and varied insect chorus. Crickets and katydids dominated the nighttime soundscape and I worked hard to find a nice combination of singing crickets, free of the incessant harsh rattles of true katydids. It was a cool night, around 55 degrees Fahrenheit. I began recording the cricket concerto and was thrilled when coyotes sounded off in the … [Read more...]

Trap Pond Revisited

Hello everyone. I'm fresh back from a week-long silent retreat at nearby Light On The Hill. The retreat was led by my good friends Jeff Collins and Gisela Konrad. It was a challenge, involving difficult "heart-centered" work, but I left the retreat refreshed and full of enthusiasm about the coming year. My New Year's resolution is: to post soundscapes nearly every day this month, encouraging whoever is listening to comment. The goal is to … [Read more...]

Trap Pond Soundscape

Hello everyone. I'm back with a new emphasis: Soundscape Recordings. I intend to launch a new series of nature soundscape audio titles within the next few months. Call them CDs if you like, but the primary mode of distribution will be through digital downloads from iTunes, amazonmp3, and similar outlets. I intend to use this blog to discuss various soundscapes and how I feel about them. I will also be creating a special section on our web site … [Read more...]

April Shuffler – A Coneheaded Katydid Surprise

The spring insect chorus here at Land Between the Lakes is richer than I expected. Last night when I returned to my camp at dusk and prepared to retire after a long and busy day, I became aware of a very high-pitched "shuffling trill," not pretty like that of a trilling cricket, but non-musical like the shuffles and scrapes of various katydids. With the help of a directional microphone, I homed-in on the insect singer, recorded him, and then … [Read more...]

Spring Field Cricket – The April Chirper

I arrived at Land Between the Lakes late in the afternoon of April 18. As dusk approached, I noticed it was almost dead quiet. No birds were singing, no frogs were calling, and I heard not a howl or yip or chatter from anything furry. But there was one sound that stood out: the incessant soft chirps of crickets, calling from under the leaves along the sides of the dirt roads. An April Chirper, sounding off at dusk from under leaves at the edge … [Read more...]