listen to africa

an audio adventure through africa


Posts tagged ‘wildlife’

Geotag Icon Wildlife: Yellow-casqued Hornbill

audio, wildlife posted by on Jan 15th, 2010

This is the first of many recordings we made on the beautiful Tiwai Island, one of Sierra Leone’s largest inland islands and a nature reserve preserving one of the last tracts of the Upper Guinea Forest in Sierra Leone. Eight types of hornbills are found on Tiwai, including this beauty, the Yellow-casqued Hornbill, whose whooshing wings and distinctive trumpeting vocalisations are often heard above the forest canopy – especially at this time of year. This is an edited extract from a much longer recording we have of this pair of hornbills. In the background, you’ll hear cracking noises and other movements created by some of Tiwai’s larger animals – including a group of Lesser Spot-nosed Monkeys in the nearby branches. We’d like to thank all the Tiwai Island crew, especially Suzanne for all her help and our guide, …



Geotag Icon About the sound recordings part II: natural soundscapes (biophonies)

Blog posted by on Nov 13th, 2009

In part II of this series, we look at natural soundscapes created by living creatures, and why we’re keen to record more and more of them.



Geotag Icon Soundscape: Life in the mangroves

audio, soundscapes posted by on Nov 12th, 2009

We recorded this just after dawn in the mangrove forest on the banks of The River Gambia, placing the microphones on a tripod among the mangrove roots to try and capture the astonishing pops, clicks and drips coming from them. We think the pops and clicks are created by crustaceans but if anyone knows for certain, we’d love to find out so please let us know in the comments! Best listened to in stereo.

Date and time recorded: 08:05 local time, 16th October 2009
Location: Tendaba, The Gambia (view on map)
Equipment: Sennheiser MKH30/40 to Fostex FR2LE
Copyright: Listen to Africa
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Geotag Icon Gallery: Senegal

Photographs posted by on Oct 26th, 2009

Landscapes, wildlife and portraits from our two months in Senegal – cycling from Rosso in the north to Ziguinchor in the south. Photographs by Huw Williams and Bex Sumner.

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Geotag Icon Soundscape: Dawn at Bessi

audio, soundscapes posted by on Oct 22nd, 2009

This soundscape was recorded at dawn in a derelict old camp near Bessi, not too far from the southern bank of The Gambia River in The Gambia. A lot of the former hotels and camps we came across on the south side of the river have been reclaimed by nature since the southern road disintegrated into a bumpy track – bad news for the Gambian tourist industry but good news for The Gambia’s 576 bird species. This was recorded using our new mics and, to celebrate, we’re keeping it long (10 minutes). It’s best listened to in stereo.

Date and time recorded: 06:44 local time, 12th October 2009
Location: Near Bessi, The Gambia (view on map)
Equipment: Sennheiser MKH30/40 to Fostex FR2LE
Copyright: Listen to Africa
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Geotag Icon Choosing sound recording equipment for the expedition – six months on

Blog posted by on Sep 21st, 2009

After six months on the road, our audio equipment is holding up well. Huw looks at how the kit has performed so far, and why we’ve made some recent additions to our equipment.



Geotag Icon Wildlife: Giant Eagle Owl

audio, wildlife posted by on Sep 14th, 2009

Giant Eagle Owls are wonderful creatures; they have huge, lidded eyes that make them look a little like gremlins, and they sound a bit like pigs. We were lucky enough to enjoy the presence of two (wild) Giant Eagle Owls at Le Thiossane camp in Senegal, and we spent a few hours sitting near this vocal individual’s tree and gaining its confidence before setting up the recorder. This extract is taken from the hour-long recording we have of this individual.

Species: Bubo lacteus
Common name: Giant Eagle Owl
Date and time recorded: 18:54 local time, 6th September 2009
Location: Near Mbodiene, Senegal (view on map)
Equipment: Audio-Technica AT897 via FEL MicBooster MB-1 to Fostex FR2LE
Copyright: Listen to Africa
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Geotag Icon Soundscape: Morning by the lagoon

audio, soundscapes posted by on Sep 14th, 2009

Evening by the lagoonIn this soundscape, recorded just after dawn at Le Thiossane camp near Mbodiene, Senegal, you can hear the insects and birds living around the saltwater lagoon coming to life. We spent a lot of mornings and evenings listening to and watching the life of the lagoon, with the sea crashing in the distance. This was recorded in mono, just before our new mics arrived…

Date and time recorded: 06:24 local time, 4th September 2009
Location: Near Mbodiene, Senegal (view on map)
Equipment: Audio-Technica AT897 via FEL MicBooster MB-1 to Fostex FR2LE
Copyright: Listen to Africa
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Geotag Icon White Rhino

audio, wildlife posted by on Sep 14th, 2009

White rhino in the Bandia reserveWhile we were in the Bandia Reserve, our guide, Mamadou, stopped the vehicle and went off on foot to follow some large tracks. Fifteen minutes later, he came back and told us to follow him, on foot. He led us to a wooded copse, where the Bandia Reserve’s only two (Southern) White Rhinos – an eight year-old pair – were resting. Here are the few seconds we managed to snatch of the female breathing.

Species: Ceratotherium simum
Common name: Southern White Rhinoceros
Date and time recorded: 12:42 local time, 31st August 2009
Location: Bandia Reserve, Senegal (view on map)
Equipment: Audio-Technica AT897 via FEL MicBooster MB-1 to Fostex FR2LE
Copyright: Listen to Africa
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Geotag Icon Flock of Village (Spotted-Backed) Weavers

audio, wildlife posted by on Sep 14th, 2009

Flock of village weavers nestingThis flock of Village Weavers was busy building nests in a tree just across from the restaurant in the Bandia Reserve. Every now and then the whole flock would suddenly go quiet for one or two seconds before starting up again. In this recording, taken just before the skies opened to rain, we captured one of these silences.

Species: Ploceus cucullatus
Common name: Village (Spotted-Backed) Weaver
Date and time recorded: 13:47 local time, 31st August 2009
Location: Bandia Reserve, Senegal (view on map)
Equipment: Audio-Technica AT897 via FEL MicBooster MB-1 to Fostex FR2LE
Copyright: Listen to Africa
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