bird calls

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sparrow
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bird calls

Has anyone ever used recordings of bird calls to bring birds into camera range?

Windhover
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Yes, and it's no secret, though many people tend to not admit to doing so. I believe that the responsible thing is not to use the calls during breeding season as it may disturb the birds too much and they may lose focus on more important activities. Also, another important thing to be aware of is that if you listen to the call CDs or whatever you use, there is a chance that there are a number of calls all in one file for the same species. Identifying the difference between the calls; eg which is an alarm call, a contact call, an aggressive call, and then playing only the one that may aid in bringing the bird close to you not drive it away! I have seen people use a whole sequence of calls on a species (many times) only to find that it does not work as the bird hearing the fake may well think "What the heck?"

There are three things that may happen if you do it right.
1) The bird will come in closer and investigate
2) The bird will be annoyed or become frightened and leave the area
3) The bird will not give a hoot and carry on whatever it was doing ignoring your efforts

What you may be wanting to also know is that if you aim to get them to a range to fill the frame in your image, then depending on what focal length you have available you may get away without a hide. But you many times need to have a bag hide or similar cover to hide you from the bird as the call may bring them close, but still not quite close. :) A car also makes an awesome, and easy hide. I have been very close to many things (even without using ANY calls) and filled the frame with the subject.
Hope this is some help for you. :)

Windhover
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I should add that I use a program called Adobe Audition to edit my sound files and save the different calls into different folders etc, only keeping the ones I know are not aggressive or alarm calls, which would be no use to me. Of course, there are many great softwares out there to edit sound files. :)

sparrow
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Only asked after viewing a few guys from the US calling birds to there hide.
When i used to breed birds we would imitate the call of the male when a pair of bourkes was slow to nest the cock bird would race to the wire ready to rip the wings off the intruder within days he would be encouraging the hen into the nest box,so i can see why it should work, i just have to find the best call,curiosity or territorial aggression,i don't want to interfere to much in there normal activities
from where im sitting i can hear what i think is two golden whistlers might try them first.

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