Relieve stress with nature’s sweet symphony of bird songs
SAN DIEGO –The joyous melody of bird songs can relieve stress in individuals. That’s because bird songs inspire a positive spirit, a sense of bliss and a feeling of hopefulness. The daily symphony of bird song arouses the same feelings that are inspired by springtime, which itself generates signals for the natural world to renew itself again.
Likewise in spring, birds joyously sing while discovering prime locations for building their nests. And as procreation occurs, new life itself begins its seasonal pageant of renewal.
In spring, nature becomes green again. Even after destructive fires have destroyed vegetation and habitat, new life gradually returns to grow unburdened. This process of destruction and rebirth includes related plant, insect, and animal life.
Bird songs can help relieve stress
One reliably glorious signal that springtime is near is the bird kingdom’s ever-escalating chorus of sound. Increasing as migrating birds return from their winter homes, waves of melodious birdsong greet us in the morning as we awaken.
Nature’s avian symphony delights and soothes the human soul. It reminds us that we are not alone, for we are part of inter-related lives and shared global experience.
There is no better time than now to take stock of the beautiful world around us. As variants of COVID arise and war in Ukraine grips the globe, filling us with a sense of uncertainty and fear, nature still offers a serious antidote for the stress we experience.
Birdsong awakens us to the beauty around us and within us year after year. It affirms and reinforces the rhythms of life and the reality of hope for better days to come. If your health allows, go outside to enjoy the warmer weather and soak in the healing, Vitamin D-rich sun while enjoying nature’s serenade.
Many species of songbirds fly north from faraway lands driven by migratory passion.
The return of many species of birds to northern climes confirms that winter is drawing to a close. This predictable migratory event reflects the universal desire of migratory species to find plentiful food supplies, suitable mates and ideal nesting places for female birds to lay their eggs and tend to their offspring.
According to The Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology, approximately 650 species of songbirds reside within North America.
Wikipedia states there are approximately 5,000 species of songbirds worldwide. Evidence suggesting many species evolved over 50 million years ago.
Across America, various Warblers, Flycatchers, Buntings, Swallows, Doves, Vireos, Orioles, Finches, Larks and hundreds of additional species of songbirds return to their customary northern habitats. They bring to us all the unmistakable, euphonious message that spring’s promise of new life has arrived at last.
In their 2013 study, “Birdsong: is it music to their ears?” — published in Frontiers of Evolutionary Neuroscience — Sarah E. Earp and Donna L. Maney (Department of Psychology, Emory University, Atlanta, GA) observe that
“Both birdsong and music elicit responses not only in brain regions associated directly with reward but also in the interconnected regions that are thought to regulate emotion.”
It is impossible to deny the negative impact noise-related stress has on emotional and physical well-being.
With ever-increasing noise decibels impacting the environment and ever-increasing population growth, there will continue to be health and emotional problems.
Some common forms of adverse environmental noise-related health difficulties include a weakened immune system compromised digestive system. Furthermore, the lowering the development of reading and verbal skills and increased emotional rage may lead to crime and other negative impacts. (Introducing Silence to our Landscape, One Square Inch at a Time.)
Experiencing the positive benefits of melodious birdsong reduces environmental stress.
In addition to today’s current atmosphere of political and health-related stress, growing urbanization brings increasing levels of noise-related stress into everyday life. Such stress ranges from traffic sounds to incoherent chatter, both of which unite with many other forms of human-created noise pollution.
All this causes us to realize that not all of life is under our control. That’s why we need, now more than ever, to increase our awareness of our natural surroundings. Doing so can help the myriad responsibilities and distractions of everyday life fade away into the background where they belong.
“For …people…, nature provided a way to shake off the weight and hardships associated with stay-at-home orders, of social isolation and of stress….”
–Kathleen Wolf social scientist, School of Environmental and Forest Sciences, University of Washington
Nature is always present for us if we choose to acknowledge it. That’s why the musical gift of bird songs provides an annual reminder of spring and its abundance of rebirth and renewal of life itself.
Until next time, enjoy the ride in good health!
Headline image: Thanks to Zdeněk Macháček @zmachacek for making this photo available freely on Unsplash. 🎁