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Deep Listening to Nature


Deep Listening to Nature is an invitation to open our ears to the natural world. Beginning by tuning in to the sounds of creatures around us, Andrew discusses how to identify species by call, interpret their communications and find empathy for their sentence. Part reflection, part nature and travel diary, Andrew asks the question: What does listening reveal about how the living systems of nature function, and why do birds in particular negotiate their interactions in such lyrical and extraordinary ways? He concludes by suggesting we not only listen to learn about nature, but learn from nature. He asks how, in our current environmental crisis, we may mimic what the biosphere has achieved in sustaining life as we move toward an ecological future and in doing so, form a deeper and more personal connection to Country. Andrew encourages us to be still and listen. Extend our senses. Let nature get to know us, and in its own way, to welcome us. The book is accompanied by an online soundtrack with 300 audio recordings, which bring the text to life.

Andrew Skeoch is an educator, naturalist, environmental thinker, and one of Australias best-known nature sound recordists. Over the last thirty years, he has documenting the sounds of wild environments around the planet, and through his label Listening Earth, published over one hundred recordings featuring habitats from most continents. These albums consistently attract Spotify streaming figures in the many tens of thousands a week. His recordings are also heard in the audio installation at Sydney Wildlife World, and feature in the currently touring Australian Geographic / Northern Pictures immersive installation Our Country. They have contributed to feature films, including Peter Gabriels soundtrack to Phillip Noyces Rabbit Proof Fence, Disneys 2016 remake of The Jungle Book, and the upcoming Force of Nature with Eric Bana. Andrew is an experienced public speaker, having given presentations to audiences ranging from local community and school groups to university students. He has delivered radio features, keynote addresses and a TEDx talk, weaving spectacular recordings with visual analysis. He is also president of the Australian Wildlife Sound Recording Group, a premier association of nature field recordists that encourages skills and passion in a new generation of enthusiasts.

* Will be an entertaining and fascinating journey for a range of readers from high school level on, appealing well beyond those with a natural history interest. * Takes the reader on a personal journey around the world, as the author discovers, documents, and comes to appreciate the sounds of our wild planet. * Invites readers to develop their own listening skills, slowing down and attuning to an awareness of nature around them. * Teaches how to interpret nature’s languages, focusing on birds and discussing why they use specific sounds to facilitate communicative purposes. Topics such as mimicry, regional dialects, song learning and sonic strategies take us deeper into the daily lives of species, and the various ways they utilise sound. * Considers how sonic communication has shaped the evolution of life on Earth, and points to how this can be heard now if we know what to listen for. * Explores how nature avoids the costs of competition through sophisticated sonic negotiations, of which the avian dawn chorus is a profound example. * Gives examples of how communication facilitates co-operation and mutual accommodation of species on an ecosystem scale, and speculates on how the health of living systems is audible. * Offers a personal reflection on Indigenous learnings, and how deep listening challenges our contemporary exploitive values and disconnection from nature. * Concludes with a consideration of our current crises; environmental, social and personal. The author points to the communications of nature as a source of insight into how life has sustained itself over vast periods of time. They tell of ‘the ways nature does things’, representing fundamental principles that have relevance to us now. Through a process of biomimicry, they can be applied to a range of issues currently facing humankind; climate change, biodiversity loss, social disintegration, the mental health crisis and conflicts in governance. * Finally, the author affirms how respectful and empathic listening, both to nature and each other, is foundational to our future. * The book is accompanied by an online soundtrack with 300 audio recordings which bring the text to life.

* Outback: Review in next edition, plus appearance on R.M. Williams Outback podcast.
* ABC Gardening: Review in Oct issue.
* Wild: Giveaway in Aug newsletter, which goes out to a larger readership than the magazine.

* Contacted major papers, incl The Saturday Paper, Guardian, Fairfax and News Corp, many of which share contact across mastheads.

* ABC Conversations
* Melbourne ABC radio 774

* Planning a ’tour’ of regional libraries in Victoria and NSW, including Bendigo, Ballarat, Shepparton, Wangaratta, Wodonga, Bathurst and Orange. These will allow for regional radio appearances.

* WOMAD - Planet Talks program at WOMADelaide
* Nature Festival SA, Oct: Participation in events centred in Adelaide.
* Megalong Valley Festival, NSW, Nov: Enviro festival, centred in Blue Mountains.

* Earth Laws Month seminar series - Aust Earth Laws community presentation.
* Adelaide Nature Festival (October)

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