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Isabelline Wheatears have a large territory with scattered song posts and long distance song flights. This makes it difficult to record good longer sequences of song.
There is an old Mongolian belief, that the Mongolian language has it’s origins in the song of the Isabelline Wheatears.
This recording was made at a place called Telmen Nuur, Mongolia, during a trip in 2013 bird ringing and sound recording.
We were camped in cloud forest at an altitude of 2,200 m in the YUS Conservation Area on the Huon Peninsula of Papua New Guinea. During the night a Harpy Eagle was calling at regular intervals not far from our camp. I got up before dawn and set out in the dark with a hand held Telinga Stereo-Dat microphone in a parabola and a Sound Devices 702 recorder. I made many recordings of a few minutes at a time starting from quite a long way off. After each recording I moved closer to the Harpy Eagle, gradually working my way upslope through the dark cloud forest. Fortunately it kept calling from the same position and eventually I was standing beneath it. I didn't get to see it however, as it was calling from high up in the dense canopy where it was hidden by epiphytes. It's distinctive call penetrated far into the surrounding forest and I imagined a mate or competitor listening somewhere.