submerged branch

Species unidentified


For this recording, I attached a contact microphone to a partially submerged tree branch along a fast-flowing section of the Golan Water in Northern Ireland’s Sperrin Mountains.

Listening from the riverbank with my headphones, the branch’s complex internal sounds were revealed: a series of dull, iterative impacts against a nearby rock; continuous, low-frequency vibration in the strong current; and (with the wood acting as a kind of natural hydrophone), the underwater bubbling of the river.


Photo © Mark Ferguson. All rights reserved.



Submerged Branch was played during BBC Radio 4's 'Slow Radio' feature on July 16, 2017. Listen here, from 19m 55s (sign-in required): http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08xxd8s#play.

Thanks to all at Broadcasting House, London. Special thanks to Paddy O'Connell and Edward Drummond.