Zorro the Zebra Finch is the only one of my little guys who got his name by association with another finch, and not by the character of his song. Indeed his song eluded me for a long time, until maybe about a year ago I started to get the gist of it. I’m sure he’s honed it down and it has matured over time, but I also think like acquiring a taste for a new style of music, I was paying more attention to it.
Zorro was a solo finch in that he had no siblings, so for company he started hanging out with his Aunt Zelda. I don’t know if she was really his aunt, but she was probably old enough to be. Zelda was the only female Zebra Finch I ever named outside of Serafina who was the original hen, because after that the females all started to look the same, had no distinguishing vocalizations, and I had no way to keep them straight, so the girls remained anonymous. But Zelda stood apart because of the skin disease or whatever it was that caused all the feathers on her head to finally disappear. Her condition made her kind of a loner and she probably had other symptoms as well that I couldn’t see or diagnose, as I kept expecting her to die. But she was a hearty little soul who outlived my expectations and she showered attention on the little guy I started calling Zorro. He was faithful to her and hung with her as he grew up, defending her in her final days.
Maybe one consequence of Zorro’s hanging out with Zelda was that it affected his song development. For the longest time his song sounded immature to me, like a little subsong that never grew up, or stuttered. Upon first listening you might think he still sounds that way, but I have been able to detect more of a pattern to it, and there seems to be a little hurried musical phrase that rushes into the chorus which he then repeats over and over. It’s not easy to write out. “Ta ta TA ta, ta-TAH, ta ta TA ta, ta-TAH” is the rhythm I hear. I have absolutely no idea what I could have named this bird if I had to come up with a name based on his song!
What’s interesting to me about this excerpt is that while Zorro is singing along with the Bach in the prelude, he pauses when the key varies from C major, waits and comes back in when it’s in C. He gets impatient though in the fugue and starts singing when it’s not in C, so I don’t think C is the only key he can sing in, but it was the one he had decided upon to convey his mood.
Many more individual Zebra Finch males’ songs will come as I ferret them out of the tapes.
Lisa, nice collection of bird pictures and information. Your audio selections currently play back on a video media screen. Suggestion. Look at how I post audio. strombeck.wordpress.com
WordPress has a nifty button for mp3 audio. Check this instruction: http://wpaudioplayer.com/usage/
You have to load to mp3 audio to your media library for the nifty player to work. [audio:your_mp3_file.mp3]
Thanks, Grant. Sure enough the reason why nothing was working properly was because I had my audio in wav format. Silly me. I think I’ve fixed everything so the audio player works now!
I have since listened more carefully to Zorro’s song and have decided that he is indeed singing his name: “Zoroaster, the Finch!” fits perfectly with his little ta-ta-ta-ta.
I and my pet Finch Zeek really enjoyed the sounds of this audio together and I enjoyed his song along with Zorro’s thumbs up.
Thank you! How cool. My friend Lesa likes Zorro’s song too, he’s developing a following. I’ll let him know he has another fan. 🙂
Just had to come back and let Zeek hear Zorro sing his song. It’s sort of funny since I found this sight when ever Zeek hears a piano play he now bigins to sing but if after a bit he does not hear Zorro he stops. Well now I just drop in to give Zeek some listening pleasure and for me as well.
Oh Lester this is so cool. Thanks so much for your comment. If I get time I will put up a small collection of Zorro’s Greatest Hits for Zeek…! 🙂