We hear the creeks gurgling once again. Bird songs fill the air.
In the National Parks, we often talk about Soundscapes…. The chorus of sounds that we associate with a specific landscape or set of resources.
One such sound, typical of Denali’s spring season, is that of the call of a male Willow Ptarmigan. It’s his mating call. And it certainly is catchy. You pretty much can’t mistake it for any other sound.
Last week, I had a visitor ask me about frogs in the park. He was convinced he’d heard a frog. We talked for a brief moment about the one frog that calls Denali ‘home’. And then I pulled out my little tablet computer and played (thanks to the _iBird_ app) for him the call of the male Willow Ptarmigan. Turns out, the Ptarmigan is what he heard, not the frog.
Between Mount Rainier and Denali, I have learned the distinct calls of a couple of birds: grouses and ptarmigan. Very interesting calls. And very memorable.
Click on the link: Willow Ptarmigan to view a video I took of this guy, strutting his stuff. I apologize for wind and creaking noises; today was very windy in the park!