Presentation at UCLA’s NanoLab

Me illustrating the use of a spectrogram and describing its central role in the study of bioacoustics.

Me illustrating the use of a spectrogram and describing its central role in the study of bioacoustics.

On July 22, I gave a presentation at UCLA’s NanoLab (Link), a summer program for high school students from around the world interested in the sciences. I presented generally about our lab’s work attempting to understand bird song syntax — how it evolves and its function in communication — with a focusĀ on the tools that we use to analyze and quantify bird songs. I gave a demonstration of spectrograms (see picture) and outlined their importance for visualizing sound. Continue reading

2015 Field Season is in the Books.

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Abandoned Cassin’s Vireo nest, with two Brown-headed Cowbird eggs (dark brown), one Cassin’s Vireo egg (whitish), and a dead chick.

My 2015 field season was a greatĀ one, and likely my last full one.

I headed to the field in early April, hoping to witness the arrival of the birds from their wintering grounds. I found five males on my first day, and watched as several more trickled in over the next few weeks and set up territories in the valley. Continue reading