What is Nature's Audio?

Nature’s Audio is a “citizen science” platform intended to collate, validate and curate acoustic data that can inform us about the distribution, ecology and behaviour of sound-producing organisms, with an initial emphasis on songbirds.

Why monitor animal sounds?

Animal vocalisations and sounds, and where and when they are heard, provide valuable information on the distribution, abundance and behaviour of species, many of which may be difficult to detect by visual means. Recordings of these sounds provide a permanent record from which information can be extracted and analysed in multiple ways.

What is the aim of Nature’s Audio?

The aims of Nature’s Audio include:

To engage members of the public in monitoring birds and other organisms by their vocalisations and other sounds that they produce

To develop and improve animal identification skills in members of the public

To encourage and facilitate peoples’ connection with the natural world

To provide a conduit for deposition of acoustic data in national archives

To conduct research into the interpretation and analysis of the collated data, in order to provide a better understanding of the distribution, ecology and behaviour of target species

Who can get involved?

Anyone can get involved with Nature’s Audio. First, any individual can register for an account to listen to individual bird songs or uploaded recordings and to start identifying the species within them. Registered users can access training material to help with starting to recognise common bird songs. We also have audio quizzes so users can test their identification expertise at any point. Second, anyone with access to a smartphone or other recording device can upload acoustic data to selected projects on the site, along with information about where and when the recordings were made.

Who runs Nature’s Audio?

Nature’s Audio has been created by scientists in the Conservation Ecology Group (CEG) at Durham University’s Department of Biosciences.