Hear the Robin's Intricate Evening Song Slowed Down

As dusk approaches, these thrushes get much more musical.

American Robin. J. Arthur Anderson/Audubon Photography Awards

This audio story is brought to you by BirdNote, a partner of the National Audubon Society. BirdNote episodes air daily on public radio stations nationwide.


This is BirdNote.

During the day, an American Robin sings a lovely, familiar song of rich phrases. The phrases vary, and ring forth with a lilting quality.

But as the sun begins to set, robin song takes on a new and exquisitely different character. From sunset until dark, a robin adds ethereal whispered notes to its carol, creating a song of remarkable grace and complexity. 

Let’s listen more closely to the fine detail of a robin’s evening song, by slowing down the same notes to ½ normal speed.  

Here’s another passage of evening song at 1/2 speed. 

In the high latitudes, where twilight lingers late into the evening, a robin may expand its daytime carols into a twilight symphony that continues for hours.

Support for BirdNote comes from Forterra – creating great communities and conserving great lands in Washington State. 



Song of typical American Robin (1) recorded by Donald Kroodsma Singing Life of Birds CD, track 12: between 15-21.  (2) Kroodsma CD, track 13:24-35  (3) ½ speed of track #2   (4) ½ speed track 13:47–55. 

The Singing Life of Birds, by Donald Kroodsma, Houghton Mifflin, Co., New York, New York.  2005. Evening ambient of several robins singing recorded by

C. Peterson M III T 50.

BirdNote’s theme music was composed and played by Nancy Rumbel and John Kessler.

Producer: John Kessler

Executive Producer: Chris Peterson

© 2013 Tune In to    June 2018   Narrator: Michael Stein

ID#  AMRO-11-2013-06-11 AMRO-11 

“The views expressed in user comments do not reflect the views of Audubon. Audubon does not participate in political campaigns, nor do we support or oppose candidates.”

Stay abreast of Audubon

Our email newsletter shares the latest programs and initiatives.