Against the low rise of a dune in the flat, arid country of outback Australia, waters from recent rains have collected, forming a broad and shallow wetland dotted with sparse vegetation.
Nomadic birdlife has gathered here to breed and feed, taking full advantage of this ephemeral opportunity. Among them, a pair of stately brolgas - Australia's native crane.
In the dark before dawn, black-tailed nativehens cackle and splash in the shallows. Other waterfowl include pink-eared ducks, teal and coots. Lewin's rail patrol the shallows, giving gruff calls, while black swans wheeze tonally from the deeper reaches.
With first light, the songbirds begin. The steady, morse-code tones of little grassbirds are heard prominently, plus the cheerful trills of fairy-wrens. Small flocks of blue-winged parrots tinkle delicately as they wing overhead, and ravens call laconically in the distance.
Suddenly the loud trumpeting of the brolgas rings out across the landscape from the far side of the wetland. With heads back and wings wide, they engage in a light-footed hopping and bobbing dance of courtship, eventually settling down to resume their steady promenade along the foreshore.
This is a rich soundscape, full of life, texture and activity.
3 minute audio sample from the 92 minute nature sound recording; "The Dancing Brolgas of Ooroolanie", available for download from http://www.listeningearth.com/LE/p-140
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