Tuesday Tune

photograph and text by Brian Willson

King Of The Mountain, Savannah Sparrow

At Beech Hill in Rockport, as April turns to May, if you listen closely you’ll hear a soft, insect-like trill that ends in a little hiccup. To me, it’s a hopeful, soothing sound: the song of the Savannah sparrow—a grasslands bird that nests each spring on the hill’s long slopes and barrens. Last year, in fact, I’m pretty sure a pair successfully fledged their young on the sod roof of Beech Nut, the hut at the summit. And I’ve already seen a male singing up there again this year.

What does a Savannah Sparrow Sound like?