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Name That Tune (and the Bird Behind It)

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This week, we invite participants to try birding by ear. Practice identifying five species common to your area by their vocalizations. The Sound ID feature of the free Merlin Bird ID app can offer suggestions for which species are calling or singing around you. (People who are deaf or hard-of-hearing may find Merlin’s spectrograms helpful as visual representations of the sounds.)

Tell us: If you’re an experienced birder, share tips for identifying birds from their sounds. And if you’re trying this for the first time, let us know how it goes.

Michael Hurben, 56, first got into birding in his 20s. He also got interested in Claire Strohmeyer, who happened to be a more experienced birder. On their third date, when she mentioned that she was going on a walk with the Audubon Society, Mr. Hurben knew he had met the woman for him.

“I just lost it, because she had been doing this her whole life,” he said. “That was our instant bond. I wasn’t going to let her go after that.” They were married in 1993, and birding became the activity they did together, eventually taking them…

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