Cityvisitor blog

Singing birds can change our mood

Singing birds may become as popular as Twitter if research starts to catch on.

Experts are starting to find enormous benefits to listening to the sound of birdsong.

The BBC has reported how audio researchers think listening to birds singing can help us concentrate, make us feel more alert, calm us down and cheer us up.

Recordings of birdsong are already being used in Alder Hey Children’s Hospital to calm young patients before injections and other treatments. A spokesperson for the hospital said: “The children find it very calming and it can help them de-stress before undergoing treatments or surgery.”

Birdsong is also used at Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport to relax nervous fliers before a trip.

Julian Treasure, author of Sound Business and chairman of noise consultancy The Sound Agency told the BBC: “People find birdsong relaxing and reassuring because over thousands of years they have learnt when the birds sing they are safe, it’s when birds stop singing that people need to worry.

“Birdsong is also nature’s alarm clock, with the dawn chorus signalling the start of the day, so it stimulates us cognitively.”

I’m not sure the sound of birds singing would be enough to relax me whilst sitting in a long traffic jam on a Bank Holiday Monday, no matter how nice it sounded. However, it would be a lot more preferable than listening to colleagues in my office wittering on about nothing all day while I work.

I wonder if it would be enough to calm over-excited fans at a football match. You can just imagine it: “Okay, the crowds are getting a bit rowdy, bring on the birds.”

At the risk of sounding incredibly grumpy, I don’t find birdsong that relaxing when it wakes me up at 5am in the morning.


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