PrefaceThis recording has ten soundscapes depicting the unique time between the end of April and early May. At that time, the lakes in Lakeland Finland are still frozen, but there is melted water in the region’s many rivers, brooks and streams where there are flowing currents. It is also the time when the region experiences the migration of waders, ducks, swans and geese (Anseriformes). The migrating birds gather around the melted waters to feed and rest. All of these soundscapes were recorded around these pools of melted water in the region of North Savo. As far as I am aware, this is the first time that these unique natural phenomena have been recorded. The soundscapes were captured by hiding the recording equipment in the vicinity of these pools. This is the only way that one can record even these very timid birds.
AcknowledgementsThe Friends of Kuopio Nature (Kuopion Luonnon Ystäväin Yhdistys r.y.) have provided a stipend to assist in this recording’s release; without this financial assistance, this CD would not have seen the light of day. In addition, I express my gratitude to the many experts who have helped in its production and for the technical help during the recording, help with the artwork, etc. Special thanks to my wife Maarit for her support and encouragement.
Producer / Recording engineer
Track descriptions and background species
01 A narrow strait bordered by ancient woodland and
willow bushes 10.05.2017 at 7.10 am; Kuopio Kaislastenlahti - 7'46"
The birds’ migration route takes them between islands and the coastline of a large lake which is dotted by many straits and islands. Due to the unusually cold weather, the spring has been delayed and most of the lake is still frozen but in the shallow straits, there are patches of melted water. These spots provide food and rest for the birds that are migrating to the north. Common Reed Bunting, Eurasian Coot, Blackheaded Gull, Common Greenshank, Black Grouse, Common Blackbird, Redwing, Eurasian Wigeon, Common Goldeneye, Fieldfare, Mew Gull, Great Tit, Common Chaffinch, Herring Gull, Northern Lapwing, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Common Crane, European Greenfinch, Eurasian Curlew, European Common Brown Frog, Common Tern, European Golden Plover, Blue Tit.
02 The calm backwaters of a brook and a field that
stretches down to the lakeside. 29.04.2012, at 9.30 pm;
Kuopio Riistavesi – 7'53"
A brook flows through a sunlit stand of birch trees and as it makes it way to the lakeside, it passes through a field; there are some ice-free spots by the edges of the field. This spring’s first warm nights and sunny days have tempted the European Common Brown Frogs to gather in their spawning grounds. The mating calls of the recently arrived Common Snipes resound over the field. Eurasian Curlew, Goosander, Fieldfare, Jack Snipe, Common Teal, Northern Lapwing.
03 The sounds of a spring night - ducks playing in the
ice-free water mixed with the groaning of the ice. 08.04.2014 at 10.50 pm; Kuopio Kaislastenlahti – 8'40"
The Mallard Ducks have found spots of free water in a river’s backwater on the banks of a large lake. The combination of a hard frost and the snow-free expanse of ice on the lake create the perfect conditions for this symphony of the ice.
04 The sounds of the Black Grouse on frozen
marshland combined with the splashes of the birds
in the melted ice. 26.04.2009 at 04.00 am; Rautalampi
Rastunsuo - 8'02"
The dawn’s clear light reflects off the calm water in those sheltered spots where the ice has melted. The Black Grouse have gathered on the frozen ground of a marsh to perform their mating rituals. Many migrating birds are taking the opportunity to rest and swim at the edges of the ice. Common Teal, Yellow Hammer, Eurasian Curlew, Fieldfare, Black-headed Gull, Mallard Duck, Mew Gull, Eurasian Skylark, Common Crane, Common Reed Bunting, Whooper Swan.
05 At the edges of some melted water on the banks of
a small pond in a meadow. 26.04.2009 at 4.00 am;
Kuopio Riistavesi - 8'24"
There is some ice-free water in the opening of a bush-lined ditch which runs through a meadow down to the edge of a pond. The wide expanse of the meadow is almost entirely snow-free. The ditches, which are swollen by melting water, and the ice-free spot by the pond’s edge has attracted many migrating birds. Northern Lapwing, Common Teal, Common Snipe, Whooper Swan, Mallard Duck, Redwing, Green Sandpiper, Common Greenshank, Eurasian Curlew, Mew Gull, Black-headed Gull, Black Grouse, Fieldfare.
06 Ground flooded by melting snow in a meadow.
27.04.2011 at 03.50 am; Kuopio Riistavesi - 7'34"
A flock of Common Teals have recently landed in the flood waters covering a shoreline meadow. The calm waters of the meadow echo to the sounds of the European Common Brown Frogs and the Common Teals. Common Snipe, Mallard Duck, Northern Lapwing, Eurasian Curlew, Common Greenshank, Green Sandpiper, Fieldfare, Great Bittern.
07 The Dawn Chorus resounds from the ice-free edges
by a wooded shoreline. 04.05.2017 at 07.30 am;
Kuopio Riistavesi - 7'03"
The early spring morning is serenaded by birdsong emerging from the ice-free spots around a sunlit glade of birch trees. The Dawn Chorus from many migrating birds – Meadow Pipits, Goosanders, Wood Sandpipers and Common Greenshanks – makes this soundscape truly unique. Eurasian Robin, Fieldfare, Common Magpie, Common Crane, Common Teal, Black Grouse, Northern Lapwing, Willow Warbler, Common Chaffinch, Eurasian Curlew, Common Wood Pigeon, Common Snipe, Redwing.
08 The wading birds at the edge of melted ice.
27.04.2011 at 8.19 pm; Kuopio Riistavesi - 8'02"
Members of the family of waders such as Green Sandpipers and Common Greenshanks can be found at the edges of melted ice where they search for food at the end of April. The migrating birds are busy with their spring courting rituals. European Common Brown Frog, Northern Lapwing, Common Snipe, Common Teal, Green Sandpiper, Eurasian Curlew, European Moor Frog, Great Bittern.
09 The sounds of a spring night around a pool of
melted water. 27.04.2011 at 01.29 am; Kuopio Riistavesi
The first warm nights of this spring have seen the arrival of migrating birds from the south. The birds seek out sites of newly-melted water. In the calm of the spring night, the recording captures the mating calls of the aquatic bird species as well as Great Bitterns. Common Teal, Eurasian Curlew, Northern Lapwing, Fieldfare, European Moor Frog, European Common Brown Frog, Common Snipe, European Skylark, Mallard Duck.
10 A pool of melted snow in a pond by an opening in
marshland. 20.04.2014 at 5.17 am; Rautalampi
Rastunsuo - 6'59"
The spring migration at the end of April sees birds landing at this wide expanse of marshland. This spot lies in the migration routes of the birds and it is especially appealing to Cranes and Ducks as well as waders. Black Grouse, Eurasian Curlew, Common Teal, Mew Gull, Common Goldeneye, Eurasian Wigeon, Song Thrush, Mallard Duck, Whooper Swan, Black-headed Gull, Long-eared Owl.