A group of over 50 nature sound recordists from around the globe have collaborated to develop Nature Soundmap, a website aimed at showcasing nature’s most incredible and inspiring sounds.
Founder Marc Anderson states, “The goal was to develop an interactive resource where people could explore and discover the amazing world of natural sound. We utilised Google’s mapping technology to integrate sound with satellite imagery and create a completely new way of listening to the planet. It was exciting to bring together the work of so many skilled sound recordists and present them in an engaging and accessible way for others to enjoy.”
You navigate using the familiar Google Maps layout, but it will take some time to get through the two hundred or so recordings on the map at present. Africa has about a dozen countries represented, and Marc assures me that there are many more recordings in the pipeline ready to be uploaded.
Over two hundred unique recordings from all seven continents are currently featured on the site, and new recordings will be added regularly. Anderson says, “Plans for the project in 2014 include creating awareness for endangered species and their habitats through sound, and developing educational content for school-aged children.”
The concept is very engaging – you could start in the Kalahari Desert and immerse yourself in a vibrant dawn chorus, or at the click of a mouse head over to Madagascar’s Andasibe forest to enjoy the spectacular morning song of Indri.
Then a quick trip back across to East Africa where the roar of distant lions rumbles on the savannah, and finally down to South Africa for a haunting nocturnal soundscape in Mmabolela Nature Reserve.
So grab your headphones, make yourself comfortable, and take a journey through the wonderful natural sounds of our planet.
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