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A bit of avian wordplay. Think A Prairie Home Companion and Elvis Costello meet a busload of birders.

You can find 47 birds in the song (or 48, depending on how you count goose and gander). Lyrics are below if you want to peek or you're stumped.

"For the Birds" was written by Matt Clark, Executive Director of Johnson Creek Watershed Council, an environmental non-profit in Portland, Oregon.

A heartfelt thank you to Joe (yay, Portland Audubon), Kyle (who flew in his track from Austin, TX), Marty, Seth and of course, Abby for generously contributing your artistic talents! Thank you to Kyle and Alyssa for the punny song credits.

Download it for free and please share. If you do choose to pay a little something, all proceeds will support Johnson Creek Watershed Council's work benefiting the birds, salmon, and otters that make Johnson Creek their home.


"For the Birds" Lyrics

If I asked you a wigeon, would you answer merganser?
Would you tell me a pintail as true as a smew?
Well, eider believe you, I’d a grebe with you
We wouldn’t buffleheads if it mallard to you

Can you condor with candor?
Are you goose, are you gander? Can you manage a tanager too?
Well dowitcher wanna, with your Northern Jacana
On a whimbrel, owl do the same too

Pauraque me to sleep
Avocet my alarm clock
Kittiwake me in the mourning . . . dove
Grab me a spoonbill, shoveler in my cereal
Snap, Grackle, Pop’s what I love

I’ve been heron from some
A good parula of thumb
Is not to harrier way through your food
If you’re fulmar or sora, If your pelican-not fit mora
oriole surely be one sorry dude.

You’re my ani, you’re my plover
Mynah veery own bird lover
Will you murrelet me kiskadee you?
Whip-or-will that be auk-ward?
Willet make you feel bluebird?
Albatross-ting you to teal me the truth

Well it’s that ptarmigan
Wren my bird song must end
I’ll sparrow you more silly puns
You say you were confused
Well, my eagle is bruised
But I’ll swallow my pride and be dunlin.


released February 1, 2014
Matt Clark - Purple Martin Guitar, bass, vo-gulls
Joe-bird Liebezeit - Mandolin Duck
Seth Lorinczi - Producerulean Warbler
Abby Sarmac - Vo-gulls
Kyle Scott - Singing Saw-whet Owl
Marty Urman - Great Blue Heron Artist



all rights reserved


Johnson Creek Watershed Council Portland, Oregon

Johnson Creek Watershed Council (JCWC) is a 501(c)3 non-profit located in Milwaukie, Oregon. Our mission is to promote restoration and stewardship of a healthy Johnson Creek Watershed through sound science and community engagement.

By buying "Songs for Johnson Creek," you are supporting JCWC's efforts to restore habitat in Johnson Creek for coho and Chinook salmon and steelhead trout.
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