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Bird in distress screaming!? HELP (1 Viewer)

BabySparrow101

Active member
I woke up this morning, and heard a bird screaming in one of the nearby Evergreen Trees. It was a single note yelp and was very disturbing. We've never heard anything like this before from the birds. There were a bunch of birds flying around it seeming upset, I believe either starlings or grackles. I live on Long Island, NY.

What bird do you think made this noise, and why? Audio recording attached.
 

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BabySparrow101

Active member
Pretty sure it's a Common Raven. They are loud and they have a lot of different calls.

After lots of researching birdcalls all day, I finally pinpointed the exact call! My initial instinct was right the whole time, it’s a type of seagull, Laughing Gull!
 
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BabySparrow101

Active member
So not “screaming“ but “laughing“. . .. ;)


Haha yeah!

I’ve never heard a laughing gull before, so it’s typical call sounded distressing to me. It took me all day to figure out, since everyone was saying it’s a raven. Definitely not guys :p I’m pleased with myself though :king:
 

nartreb

Speak softly and carry a long lens
It's also a bit unlikely for small tree-nesting birds to be swarming a laughing gull.
 

BabySparrow101

Active member
Trust me, we have a mall nearby where seagulls flock in huge numbers. Now that it’s closed, it makes sense they’d migrate outside it. I’m 5 minutes from the mall. The call I heard matched it exactly, so my arms are tied.
 

birdmeister

Well-known member
United States
Just want to reiterate that the bird in the recording is a Common Raven! They can be shockingly loud and wild-sounding.

A Laughing Gull could be seen over a backyard, especially on Long Island. However, as Microtus and nartreb pointed out, a Laughing Gull in a tree would be nearly impossible. The only North American gull known to perch in trees at ANY time is Bonaparte's Gull, and certainly not when they're migrating through the U.S.

I appreciate that you think you've got the ID, but the grating call is spot on for a raven and a Laughing Gull simply wouldn't be in a tree.
 

nartreb

Speak softly and carry a long lens
I hadn't even listened to the recording, because I've got a tin ear, but this one really isn't close. The rhythm and pace are all wrong for laughing gull. It sounds very much like a corvid to me, and in fact it's a perfect match for Common Raven as found on xeno-canto.
 

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