bird sounds like a whistle blowing

What Bird Sounds Like a Whistle Blowing?

Birds can emit various kinds of sounds for multiple purposes. What bird sounds like a whistle blowing? There are several species that can sound like they are blowing a whistle. A common one is the male American Wigeon that we can look into further detail along with some other bird species.

What Is the American Wigeon?

Photo by Donna Dewhusrt

The American Wigeon, or the Mareca americana, is a kind of dabbling duck that one can commonly find in various regions of North America. It is not too big or small in its size. The male duck comes in green, cream, white and brown colors while the female duck usually has brown and gray feathers.

These birds are generally found in wetlands and tend to be a migratory species and travel and gather in flocks.

They are also quite loud and noisy, with the male duck making a three-note whistling sound while the females tend to growl or grunt.

Why Does It Sound Like a Whistle Blowing?

The male American Wigeon emits a three-note sound that sounds like a whistle blowing. It sounds that way since it has a high pitch and comes from its nasal cavity, making it sound pinched, much like the sound of a whistle.

This kind of sound can be attributed to the ways in which their bodies have evolved to allow them to survive and increase their population. The male duck in particular has this quality, along with more colorful feathers.

What Does It Make This Sound For?

Photo by Mdf

The male American Wigeon generally tends to make this sound so that it can serve as a mating call to attract other female ducks to them. Thus, this kind of sound becomes their own way of trying to court the female ducks.

Author Note: They can also make this sound to alert the remaining flock of any kind of harm or danger that they may sense. This can then enable them to fly away to safer locations.

It can also be a way of communicating with other birds of the same flock. These calls can either be for hunger or other needs-based calls that can maintain their requirements and safety.

How Do You Distinguish Its Sound?

You can distinguish the sound of the American Wigeon in particular by opening your ears to the distinct three syllables that this bird lets out. These syllables will be pleasant as well as shrill. It will sound like someone is blowing through a wind instrument or whistle.

This sound is the main distinguishing trait of the American Wigeon that can help you identify this bird. If you are still confused, you can look for the appearance of the male bird that will include green colors around the eyes, a white patch on the head and gray and brown feathers.

You can also listen for the lower grunts of the female birds to distinguish the males and females.

Audio by Manuel Grosselet

Which Other Birds Sound Like a Whistle Blowing?

There are also several other species that we can look into to determine what bird sounds like a whistle blowing. Let’s find out more about these birds.

Cedar Waxwing

The Cedar Waxwing is medium in its size and tends to have silky and wax-like feathers and wings, which is where it gets its name from. They are commonly found in brown, gray, yellow and red colors found in patches throughout their bodies.

These birds commonly travel and gather in flocks. They have a shrill sound that sounds like they are blowing through a whistle. These whistles are often sharp and trill-like and can last for barely half a second.

This sound is louder at the start of its call. It usually tends to make this call while it is flying for all kinds of purposes.

Audio by Jorge Medina-Madrid

Brown-Headed Cowbird

Photo by Imogen Warren

The Brown-Headed Cowbird is a small bird that is mainly found in North America. They are known as cowbirds because they stay within the vicinity of cows so that they can catch the insects that they tend to gather around them.

Author Note: These birds are black and brown or gray and brown in color. They tend to make a whistle-like trilling sound that comes in three notes that start off with a sharp whistle and are followed by the remaining two sounds.

They can emit these sounds usually when they are in flight.

Audio by Thomas Magarian

Upland Sandpiper

Photo by Johnath

Upland Sandpipers are relatively larger in size and are known for their long tails. They also have black and brown colors and spots on their bodies. They are mainly found in both North and South America.

The males make a sharp trilling sound that makes it sound like a whistle. These tend to sound like birdsong, but these birds also make shorter whistling sounds that have multiple notes.

They can make this sound on multiple occasions, such as while flying, to call out as well as to indicate danger.

Audio by Paul Marvin


Photo by Imogen Warren

Common blackbirds are often found in North America but can also be found in several other parts of the world, such as Europe, Africa and Australia. They have long tails and black-colored feathers across their body while their beaks are brighter in color.

These birds make a shrill and loud whistle-like sound that can indicate alarm or danger. Usually, however, their calls are mellow versions of this whistle sound.

Chipping Sparrows

Photo by Imogen Warren

Chipping Sparrows are also found all over North America. It has gray, orange and brown colors across various parts of its body. Its tail is long while it is medium in its size.

Chipping sparrows tend to make whistle-like trills across intervals for communicating with each other or even for mating calls. These differ slightly when it comes to males and females.

These sounds can also be pleasing to listen to as birdsong if done rhythmically.

Audio by Manuel Grosselet


Warblers are known to be songbirds and are quite small in their size. They can be of several different kinds and colors. Their sounds also tend to differ depending on the type of bird.

Generally, however, they produce sounds that sound like a whistle blowing. These sounds are harsh, loud and shrill but tend to sound pleasing to the ears. In some cases, however, they can be used for other purposes such as alerting other birds, mating, calling out and more.

These birds might not all be related to each other due to the number of sub-species but they do share several traits such as the sounds they make.

These birds mainly tend to eat insects and can be found in wetlands and fields.

Eastern Wood-Peewee

Photo by Tony Castro

Eastern Wood-Peewees are small to medium in their size. They have gray and olive green colors on their bodies and are mainly found in North America. They also have a long tail.

Author Note: They are well-known for the sounds that they make, distinguished as a trilling whistle. These usually take place in three notes or syllables and can last up to an entire second at a time.

They produce these sounds for mating, calling out, alerting other birds of danger or harm or as birdsong. However, there tend to be minor differences in these whistles, depending on the context.

Audio by Jerome Fischer

Final Remarks

We have now taken you through all the important things to know when it comes to what bird sounds like a whistle blowing. To sum up, the American Wigeon is well known for making this kind of sound.

However, there are several other bird species that produce this sound as well that we have elaborated on in some detail through this guide.

Ultimately, what bird sounds like a whistle blowing can depend on several factors such as their region, context, evolution and body type, among others.

We hope you enjoyed this article on what bird sounds like a whistle blowing.

Fly high friends!


Why do birds make different sounds?

All kinds of birds tend to make several different sounds that can differ on the basis of the species that they belong to as well as the evolution of these birds. These different sounds can be for several reasons, such as mating calls, communication, mid-flight sounds, danger alerts and more.

These sounds may also differ on the basis of the context. For instance, there can be certain differences depending on whether they are calling for mating or alerting other birds. One might be pleasant, while the other might be sharp and short.
These sounds can also sometimes differ based on the sex of the bird.

How do you mark the difference between all the birds that make whistle-blowing sounds?

As we have seen above, there are several birds that can help us figure out what bird sounds like a whistle blowing. To mark the difference between all kinds of birds that make similar sounds, you will need to particularly note the differences in the syllables, sounds and contexts.

This can take plenty of time to figure out and a lot of expertise. However, you can also look for other features that separate the birds such as their shape, size and color. You can then move on to noting down the difference between what bird sounds like a whistle blowing.

Comments 1
  1. Thank you for your website. I have recently seen a bird that I have heard quite a bit but never saw. It has a 2 note high pitched sound. The bird is all black with white on it’s breast that came close to it’s throat. I have searched the web and only found 1 bird that looked like that bird but did not have the song. Since I live in the Midwest, it was not an Australian woodswallow. I thought it might be a king bird but it didn’t have the song. Can you help me? Thanks for listening.

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