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Dove-like calls at dawn

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I just signed up for thus forum today, and I hope I’m going about this the right way. I live on a small mountain near the eastern panhandle of West Virginia. From our cabin, and often while camping, I’ll hear a repetitive, somewhat throaty low-pitch call around dawn. Sometimes I’ll hear it as late as 8:00 AM, but it’s usually closer to dawn. Sometimes it sounds closer to the ground, other times up near the canopy. To me it sounds like a call a dove could make, but there are times when the bird (if it’s a bird) will move from tree to tree, sometimes over a wide area, and I’ve yet to detect flight. And I’ve listened to endless sound bytes of mourning doves and haven’t heard this call yet. I attached a short video I recorded this weekend from our tent. It will probably require headphones, and you’ll have to ignore the rain and the song birds. I think the calls stand out though. Any help would be greatly appreciated. I’ve spent a lot of time going through bird sound databases searching.

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The Bird Nuts, thank you so much. I have been going through the entire list of common West Virginia birds, and for some reason I kept skipping over the Cuckoos. I guess I thought they were more western US birds. I’ve never seen one before, or at least not close enough to know I was seeing a species new to me. And you might not believe this, but I am sitting on my back porch and was listening to yellow-billed cuckoo sounds on my bird app, and as I’m typing this, there is a cuckoo sitting on a branch about 10 feet from me!! Robin sized bird, bright yellow bill, brown bars over white on the underside of tail feathers. I can’t believe it. And the sound is down so low on my phone and I have jazz playing much louder in the background. Did it hear me playing the calls? Did it know I was writing a message about it? Does it like Stan Getz? ?

Not only did you help me identify this call I’ve been trying to identify (and driving my wife crazy about) all summer, but while I’m replying to you I get to see one up close. I can’t thank you enough.

And what’s funny to me is that I kept telling my wife that maybe it’s a morning sound a raven or crow makes that we just haven’t heard before, and I just saw that “rain crow” and “storm crow” are nicknames for the yellow-billed cuckoo.

Thank you again. I’m so stoked I found this forum.


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That's awesome!  I bet it did hear you playing the calls.  I think they might respond to humans mimicking their calls as well.

You have come to the right place.  There are so many knowledgeable people here who are willing to share their knowledge and experience.  I have learned so much from this forum, not just by asking questions, but by browsing the threads as well.

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13 minutes ago, The Bird Nuts said:

I have learned so much from this forum, not just by asking questions, but by browsing the threads as well.

Me too. When I joined the forum, I didn't even know how to identify a Pine Warbler. Now I can do it with one eye closed :classic_biggrin:.

I like this forum the most as it encourages ongoing learning, not just previous knowledge.

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