Krause shows us that what we hear in the natural world is important for many reasons, but what we don’t hear might be truly alarming.
Why you should listen:
With a stellar electronic music resumé including work with The Byrds, Stevie Wonder and many others, Bernie Krause is assured a place in the pop culture canon. But Krause continues to make history by capturing the fading voices of nature: studying sonic interplay between species as they attract mates, hunt prey, and sound out their roles in the ecosystem.
Krause’s recordings are not merely travelogues or relaxation tools — they are critical barometers of global environmental health. His documents of vanishing aural habitats are a chilling reminder of shrinking biodiversity. As he tells the Guardian: “The fragile weave of natural sound is being torn apart by our seemingly boundless need to conquer the environment rather than to find a way to abide in consonance with it.”
Who is he:
Bernie Krause has been recording wild soundscapes — the wind in the trees, the chirping of birds, the subtle sounds of insect larvae — for 45 years. In that time, he has seen many environments radically altered by humans, sometimes even by practices thought to be environmentally safe. A surprising look at what we can learn through nature’s symphonies, from the grunting of a sea anemone to the sad calls of a beaver in mourning.
- Krause shows us that there are three important areas in a wild soundscape. These are the geophony, the biophony and the _______________ .
- According to Krause, the sounds made by humans are often described as ___________.
- The seemingly most harmless type of logging is selective cutting. Krause’s study of a California Meadow shows audio changes even after A) 10 years, B) 15years, C) 20 years, D) 20 years or E) 25 years.
- Krause defines his recordings as soundscape ecology. What does he mean by this?
- Krause says that over fifty %of his recording sites have been so altered by humans that meaningful recording cannot be done there at this time. What are the implications of this for the future?
- Krause’s story of the beaver gives strong indication of animal ____________ , something older biologists have difficulty believing.