Barbed Fences with Hedgerows

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Hawthorn and Life stock Fence

Here are two examples of hedgerow interacting with livestock fencing. This first is a Hawthorn Hedge, and the second is a  Holly bush. Both species are invaluable resources for wildlife, both for providing nutrition as well as safe havens for dwellings. In the deepest and coldest recess of winter, the holly is the one and only remaining recourses where nutrition may be found by many animals, and it is for this reason that any gardener or tree surgeon worth his salt will resist all temptation to fell these plants. I believe that the Hawthorn is also prized for its nutrition, as it is one of the first plants to bud in springtime. Its thorny branches of tightly knitted spikes, give added protection for nests. Small birds love both these plants, and if you're interested in developing the bird life in your garden then I can highly recommend both of these species to add to your priority list.

Now the recordings of these livestock fences offer an overwhelming resource to us as sound recordists. The verity of interactions we hear through the vibrations of the wires is equal to that of any symphony. We not only hear the bushes themselves, but the wind, pushing past the fence, and with a little force can begin to vibrate the fence like a string on an instrument. Of course, this is in effect what we have a complex netted string supported by many bridges. We hear the birds landing and taking off. Rabbits squeezing through the holes, branches from trees swept into their path, as well as the short and lifeless grasses and twigs rattling gently from near to far. In effect what we hear is a true wild snapshot of nature interacting, and playing part in the ensemble.

Spatially our listening is curved, the propagation of sound through the wire give the impression of things being closer than they actually are, and, therefore, our spatial navigational processes does not consider this as a soundscape as though it was in air, with a gentile gradient the further away the sound is, but as an unusual and slightly warped effect which could be more equal to an exponential gradient in distance. This makes it a very beguiling and interesting world to explore.

Holly Bush and Life-stock Fence

A further experimentation unsung these recordings can be heard here at the NEO project

© Huw McGregor 2015