Archived Outdoors

Learn bird talk

Barbara Ballentine. File photo Barbara Ballentine. File photo

Find out how birds talk to each other during a program offered at 6:30 p.m. Monday, Jan. 29, at the Cowee School Arts and Heritage Center near Franklin. This talk was rescheduled from its original Jan. 15 date due to inclement weather. 

Barbara Ballentine, Ph.D., an associate professor of biology at Western Carolina University, will speak on “Bird Talk: An Exploration of Avian Communication.” The beauty of birdsong is one of the joys of nature, and this talk will explore how songs are learnt and performed, why the quality of a male’s repertoire can affect his mating success, and how birds use song-matching and countersinging in territorial disputes. Birds communicate through visual signals too, such as bright-colored feathers and aggressive wing-waving. Understanding how birds produce and use signals to commuicate provides insight into their lives.

The program is offered as part of the “Where We Live: Nature, History and Culture” series. The Cowee Center is located at 51 Cowee School Road.

Smokey Mountain News Logo
Go to top
Payment Information


At our inception 20 years ago, we chose to be different. Unlike other news organizations, we made the decision to provide in-depth, regional reporting free to anyone who wanted access to it. We don’t plan to change that model. Support from our readers will help us maintain and strengthen the editorial independence that is crucial to our mission to help make Western North Carolina a better place to call home. If you are able, please support The Smoky Mountain News.

The Smoky Mountain News is a wholly private corporation. Reader contributions support the journalistic mission of SMN to remain independent. Your support of SMN does not constitute a charitable donation. If you have a question about contributing to SMN, please contact us.