I was in Rochester yesterday, but back at home this morning, and still have a 
Yellow-billed Cuckoo calling. The call is a harsh throaty "Kowp.... Kowp.... 
Kowp.... Kowp.... Kowp.... Kowp.... Kowp.... Kowp...."

I had decided that I just couldn't describe the differentiation of Black-billed 
and Yellow-billed Cuckoo calls as John requested, but regarding _this_ 
particular call, I listen for the differences between hard "C" and harder "K", 
and between a mellow "oo" and a raspy hollow "owp".  (this just breaks down a 
transliteration found in some field guides; I'm not asserting that it should be 
meaningful to anyone other than me)

Out the window right now, I'm watching a pair of Great-crested Flycatchers 
gathering nest material from the garden!

My responses to Richard's Mockingbird questions:

>> 1, How large a collection of different sounds can one bird make?

The brain's the limit!

>> 2. I recognize some of the sounds. Would a cardinal be confused in hearing 
>> his call?

Perhaps momentarily, but the Mockingbird's habit of varying the calls, and 
delivering each one in triplicate, quickly gives the game away

>> 3. Are the sonograms of a mockingbird and a cardinal about the same, or can 
>> you tell them apart.

I'm not up on sonograms, but I assume they can be drawn at various resolutions, 
and that a low-res similarity would break down at sufficiently high resolution.

>> 4. Mockingbirds migrate. Can you tell where they spent the winter by the 
>> songs they sing?

I had a Catbird around home one summer who sang "chuck-wills-widow". I couldn't 
say _where_ he learned that, but l don't think he made it up!

>> 5. Do mockingbirds make calls of predators like owls or hawks?


-Geo Kloppel


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