How does the Macaulay Library help?

Have a question for the animal researcher?

post your questionread the answers

Post your questions here for Colleen McLinn. We'll pick the best ones and post her answers.

The sound and video collections at the Macaulay Library provide a permanent record for scientific study. Archivists preserve the tapes in a climate-controlled environment and digitize them for previewing over the internet. The raw data in the audio and video tapes is available for viewing, re-analysis, and interpretation by anyone.

Raven Software
"Sound visualization tools are really helpful because you can see a sound drawn in front of you as you hear it play. By just hearing a bird song, we might have a sense that it is ‘variable’ or ‘complicated,’ but by seeing it, we really understand how a sound goes up or down in pitch, or gets louder or softer at different points in time."
Courtesy of Macaulay Library

Video is an important tool in the study of animal behavior, because you can step through sequences in slow motion while labeling and categorizing events on a computer. Similarly, we can slow down complicated bird sounds in order to better understand what is actually happening.