December 3, 2015, by Helen Whitehead
Discover the Western Soundscape Archive
Sarah Stubbings writes: Did you know that one in five mammals, one in eight birds and nearly one in three amphibians worldwide are threatened with extinction? And this is largely due to what we humans are doing to our environment.
This damning statistic is one of the many insights into the natural world that you can find in the Western Soundscape Archive. This stunning resource features thousands of audio recordings of birds, frogs, toads, reptiles and mammals in their environments across the western United States.
You can use the Western Sound Archive in so many different ways: as an educational resource in schools or colleges, to explore the articles and recordings for your own personal interest in ecology, or to unwind at the end of a long day by listening to the sounds of nature. Feeling more contemplative? Then, take the Western Sound Archive as a sounding board to make you think about what is out there in the natural world, and what we are in danger of losing.
Some of the audio files are downloadable so how about trying:
- One of them as your alarm clock. For example, you could be waking up to the sounds of Ironwood Forest at dawn
- A herd of bison as your new ring tone
- Or California elephant seals as the soundtrack to your meditation
And surely the Elk bugle call should be this year’s Christmas number one?
If this has spurred your interest in the environment, there’s still time to join us in the MOOC Sustainability, Society and You, our free online course on the FutureLearn platform. Take a look at this page about culture and sustainability that includes a mention of the Western Soundscape Archive.
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