AWSRG Workshops

Mar

1

2019

AWSRG 2019 Workshop / Conference Dates

Dates for the Australian Wildlife Sound Recording Group’s 2019 conference / workshop are now confirmed. Specific details and logistics for the event are still coming together, but in the meantime, please make a note of dates in your calendars.

8th – 12th July, 2019

UNSW Field Station, Smiths Lake, NSW.

Australian wildlife sound recording workshop

 

Our gathering will be week of listening to the natural world – sharing the skills and experience of nature sound recording for a variety of purposes, ranging from scientific research, to artistic responses and personal enjoyment.

Our venue will be the UNSW Field Research Station, located on the southwest shore of Smiths Lake, part of the Myall Lakes region on the central NSW coast. It is around 100km north of Newcastle and 35km south of Forster.

This location offers us a huge range of opportunities for wildlife sound recording, encompassing ocean and coastal, saltwater to freshwater lake habitats, and extensive tracts of sandy coastal heath, swamps, sclerophyll woodlands and subtropical rainforests.

One of our keynote presenters will be Dr. Douglas Quin, from Syracuse University in the US. Doug has a vast experience of sound recording around the world, including some extraordinary research in the Antarctic, and his work is accomplished in both sciences and arts. He’s generous with his knowledge, a natural educator, and enthusiastic about being part of our event.

We’re scheduling our conference for July to tie in with Doug’s availability. However we’re hoping it will also make it possible for local researchers, who would often be in the field during spring, to attend and contribute. We’ve found that our usual September timeslot has often precluded these professionals in the past. Given the extremely dry conditions in recent years across the inland and Queensland in particular, the coastal location should give is ample recording subjects, even though it is early in the season.

Details about the speakers program and workshops for the week, accommodation options, costs and booking details (much of it preliminary at this stage), will be available and updated on the conference page here.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Jan

1

2019

HNY 2019!

Wishing all AWSRG members and friends a fulfilling 2019. May the natural world sing for your microphones, or even better, just for you.

This year we will be holding our biennial workshop/conference. The organising committee are still considering venues (although we have one which looks very suitable), and our anticipated dates are the second week of July (a little earlier than usual). This time will hopefully allow researchers who would normally be in the field during spring to attend, plus allow a pre-eminent visiting recordist from overseas to be our keynote guest.

More details of all this as they are confirmed. But for now, lightly pencil the 8th-12th July in your (digital?) diaries, and we’ll look forward to gathering again.

Grey Fantail

Jan

28

2018

Presentations from the 2017 AWSRG Conference, Baradine

Each of the presentations at our 2017 conference were audio recorded as a document of the event, and are presented here in program order.

The acoustic in the room makes it difficult to hear at times, but hopefully the audio will be clear enough. Thanks to Bob Tomkins for making these recordings.

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Jan

18

2018

Huon Peninsula Soundscape, Papua New Guinea Rainforest

The Perspectives on Listening Symposium in Brisbane this last December gave me the incentive to edit up a soundscape from our recent trip to the Huon Peninsula in Papua New Guinea.

Leah Barclay invited myself (Andrew), Tony Baylis, David Stewart, Rod Thorn and Sue Gould to form a panel to discuss the trip and how we approached our sound recording. David, Rod and Sue were unable to attend, but Tony Baylis and I showed images and contrasted our individual field techniques and results. My impression of our one hour session was that many in the audience were particularly fascinated to hear of Tony’s bioacoustic field work.

Meanwhile, I edited this soundscape as an installation on multiple headphones so participants could immerse themselves in the rainforest during breaks in the symposium program.

The edit is compiled from seven sources, each about five minutes in duration, and representing aspects of the various altitude ranges to which we trekked and recorded.

Location sources are:
A – Hill forest (~1100m)
B – Mountain forest (Camp Astrapia) (~2000m)
C – Mountain forest (Midway Camp) (~2150m)
D – Cloudforest (Camp 13) (~2800m)
Timings are for approximate transitions.

0:00     1. Predawn insect chorus with Sooty Owl, Feline Owlet Nightjar and Papuan Boobook (B)
4:20     2. Dawn chorus with Regent Whistler, Lesser Melampitta and Ornate Fruit Doves (C)
10:10    3. Regent Whistler song (B)
16:40    4. Greater Ground Robin song (D)
21:30    5. Huon Bowerbird by its bower (D)
27:10    6. Emperor Bird of Paradise, with Cicadabird and Growling Riflebird (A)
33:40    7. Dusk cicada chorus, with Papuan Woodcock dusk flight calls (D)

I’ll be publishing extended recordings for free listening on our Listening Earth website in the near future, and will post specific links here.

Oct

1

2017

A Magical Evening with Glossy Black Cockatoos

On one of the final evenings of our workshop, a group of us set out for Salt Caves Dam, to witness and record the Glossy Black Cockatoos coming in to drink on sunset.

We set up both terrestrial and hydrophone rigs, recording independently above and below the surface of the dam.

The hydrophones were filled with sound immediately, a rich symphony of aquatic insects fizzing away. However we had to wait quietly as the late afternoon ebbed before the glossy blacks came in. They timed their arrival just as the breeze stilled. A pair arrived first, and watched us unconcerned from a high vantage. After a while others drifted in, around 15 birds eventually, perching and calling back and forth before finally dropping down to the dam edge to drink just on nightfall.


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Sep

30

2017

Minutes of AWSRG 2017 AGM

Our workshop at the Pilliga concluded with an AGM, minutes of which can be accessed here (pdf):
Minutes 2017 AGM of the AWSRG

Sep

21

2017

A week of sounding the Pilliga

In summing up our recent week of sharing sound in the Pilliga forest, I can’t say it better than Tony Baylis; “the best AWSRG workshop I’ve been to”.

From left to right (* in back row):
Kerry Watson, Fred van Gessel, Michael Hannan, Julie Broken-Brow, Sue Gould, Jessie Cappadonna, Rod Thorn*, Vicki Hallett & son Jackson, Bob Tomkins*, Lucy Farrow, Howard Plowright, Leah Barclay*, David Secomb*, Pat (from Gamilaroi mob), Jennifer Ackerman*, Nicole Carroll, Sue Boardman*, Jill Plowright, Michael Mahony*, Marg Eller*, Andrew Skeoch, Mike Fitzgerald*, Ros Bandt, Arthur McDevitt*, Melinda Barrie & Tony Baylis.
Photographer: Jeff Eller

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Aug

31

2017

Provisional Program for September 2017 workshop

Download the provisional program for our September workshop/conference (pdf).

Flexibility will allow us to respond to discussion and interest from the group in the structuring of some sessions, and  spontaneity in adding others.

AWSRG 2017 Workshop Provisional Program

Jun

9

2017

Speakers for the September 2017 workshop

We’re delighted to announce the speakers and facilitators for our September 2017 workshop.

Despite being a small, independent organisation, we’ve managed to interest some high profile speakers across diverse areas of nature sound research and practice to attend and share their experience.

The Genius of Birds - Jennifer AckermanOur special guest will be American science author Jennifer Ackerman, who’s fascinating book ‘The Genius of Birds’ has been widely read and praised. She will be presenting the latest research on avian intelligence and how it informs communication and repertoire.

In addition to presentations from leading bioacoustic researchers across bird, frog, insect and bat studies, we have eco-acousticians talking about both field work and analysis. Citizen science projects will be discussed, and the arts featured with participatory and performance components.

But the core of the week’s events will focus on developing practical recording skills, in field sessions run by experienced recordists. Once indoors, we’ll also be demonstrating how to clean up, publish and archive recordings.

It’s looking to be an exciting week of both presentations and field workshops. We hope you can join us!

For workshop info and to book your place, please see:
http://awsrg.org.au/2017-workshop/

Please note – if you’d like to offer a talk (and we’d love you to!), we do have space available to include you in our program. Please get in touch with Andrew or Sue to discuss.
Andrew Skeoch: listen@netcon.net.au
Sue Gould: susanfgould@yahoo.com

 

Our speakers and facilitators:

David Paull – local ecologist, who will give us an overview of the Pilliga.
Dr. Leah Barclay – Researcher, artist and educator at Griffith University. President of the Australian Forum for Acoustic Ecology, the vice-president of the World Forum of Acoustic Ecology. Director of Biosphere Soundscapes & River Listening Projects.
Jennifer Ackerman – science writer and author of ‘The Genius of Birds’.
Dr. Ros Bandt  – internationally recognised composer and sound artist, with a particular interest in environmental music and listening.
Julie Broken Brow – PhD student using Anabat for her research on bats.
Jessie CappadonnaAustralian Citizen Science Association, and research project using acoustic monitoring for Eastern Bristlebirds.
Alex Drew – CSIRO, Australian National Wildlife Collection – Wildlife Sound Archive.
Lucy Farrow – Research project on acoustic signalling of Noisy Miners.
Dr. Michael Mahoney – synchronous calling of frogs and what it may mean.
Dr. Sue Gould – Vocalisations of the Huon Bowerbird.
David Smith – Charles Sturt University, project using remote acoustic sensors.
Michael Towsey – Sonographic representation of long-temporal eco-acoustic data.
Andrew Skeoch – Using Izotope software to process and repair field recordings.

Apr

9

2017

The successful 2015 AWSRG Workshop

The 2015 AWSRG workshop was held at Little Desert Nature Lodge from 27th September to 2nd October 2015. This was a great success, with participants coming from far afield to attend.

Over the five days we heard a variety of speakers presenting on a range of topics ranging from field experiences, exotic destinations, sound editing and sound recognition software, the evolution of bird and mammal calls, how birdsong can inspire music, and more. There were also workshops, equipment comparisons, early morning dawn chorus sessions, sharing of sounds and reflecting on the future of the group. Then there was the more serious business of the AGM.

For more reading and sounds that were recorded, see Audio Wings Vol.17, No.2 and listen to CD No.33.

Here is a snapshot of the week, in images and sounds…

Some of those who attended, from back left to right: Arwen Ximenes, Fiona Baylis, Neil Boucher, June Boucher, Sue Boardman, Micheal Hannan, Margaret Elrick, Maureen Collier, Jill Plowright, Howard Plowright, David Secomb, Bob Tomkins, Kerry Watson.

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