Mnemonics – What is That?

 

Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus) by Lee at Circle B

Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus) by Lee at Circle B

Mnemonics – What is That?

When birdwatchers want to identify a bird, many times all they are able to do is hear it. Can you listen to a bird and know what kind it is? Some birders use a help called “mnemonics.”

(Definition of mnemonics from Kids Wordsmyth)

mne·mon·ics
pronunciation: ni ma nihks [or] nih ma nihks
part of speech: plural noun
definition: a process, system, or technique used to aid and improve the memory.

Eastern Wood Pewee (Contopus virens) by Raymond Barlow

Eastern Wood Pewee (Contopus virens) by Raymond Barlow

Many birds say their name, like a Eastern Wood Pewee.

Carolina Chickadee (Poecile carolinensis) by Daves BirdingPix

Carolina Chickadee (Poecile carolinensis) by Daves BirdingPix

Carolina Chickadee – “feebee feebay, chick’adee-dee-dee”

Blue Jay by Dan at Bok Tower

Blue Jay by Dan at Bok Tower

Blue Jay – -“jay”

Another way mnemonics are used is to make up a phrase or saying of what the bird sounds like.

Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus) by Quy Tran

Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus) by Quy Tran

Carolina Wren – “teakettle, teakettle, teakettle”

Eastern Towhee (Pipilo erythrophthalmus) by Ray

Eastern Towhee (Pipilo erythrophthalmus) by Ray

Eastern Towhee – “drink-your-teeee”

White-throated Sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis) ©USFWS

White-throated Sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis) ©USFWS

White-Throated Sparrow – “poor Sam Pea’body, Pea’body, Pea’body”

This is just an introduction to using “mnemonics” to help you find out what that neat bird your listening to is called. We will cover more birds later. The Lord has given us so many beautiful birds to watch and listen to. Each bird has it’s own songs and calls, but there are so many. How do we figure out who is who? Using this method is just one more way to help.

Hear instruction and be wise, and do not neglect it. (Proverbs 8:33 ESV)

Let the wise hear and increase in learning, and the one who understands obtain guidance, (Proverbs 1:5 ESV)

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