From drums to hums, chirps to whistles, animals make some remarkable sounds. These sounds can be made for a number of reasons, from communicating with each other to marking their territory and even attracting mates. There’s always a reason why animals do what they do. It’s rare that something’s just random.
If you’ve ever wondered which animal has the most beautiful voice, I’m here to explore some of the most beautiful ones on the planet. Because some sounds really are like music to your ears.
Here are the top 15 animals with the most beautiful noises – and believe it or not, they’re not all birds. Some of them are bound to surprise you, in fact!
Unlike many big cats in the wild, cheetahs can’t roar. You’d think they’d be able to with their incredible ability to run like lightning. They’ve clearly got something to roar about! Instead, they sound more like birds in flight.
Cheetahs chirp. They do it for several reasons – to communicate with other cheetahs and to avoid attracting other big cats like lions. The reason they chirp instead of roar is purely down to their make-up. A cheetah’s thyroid bone is shaped differently from thyroid bones in wild cats that can roar. This makes it only possible for them to chirp. And it’s why your house cat can’t roar, either.
If you listen carefully, it’s actually a very beautiful sound, especially because it’s coming from such a large, powerful animal.
Woodpeckers are another animal that chirps, but that’s not their single distinguishing sound. Their most distinguishing – and beautiful – sound is the drum. It’s the sound they make when pecking wood. They do this to find food, make nests, attract mates, and defend territory.
Both female and male woodpeckers drum. If you live in a suburban area, you’ve no doubt heard the sound many times before. Perhaps it woke you up in the morning once or twice. Sometimes, woodpeckers drum on houses too. So if the drumming sounds particularly loud, it could be because he or she’s coming for your house. But don’t worry, he’s not strong enough to carve a whole big enough to let himself inside.
Koalas make an incredible sound. It’s actually rather a surprising sound for such a small animal. You see, koalas make a low, rumbling vocalization – a sound one would expect from an elephant rather than a koala. Some even compare the sound to that of dinosaurs.
According to scientists, koalas have an extra pair of vocal folds outside the larynx, and it is this that allows them to produce such a low-pitched sound. Scientists say their voices are around “20 times lower than would be expected for an animal of its size.”
Koalas make this sound to attract mates. However, since their voices are generally low, they most likely make this noise whenever they are trying to communicate with their species.
I honestly had no idea what a koala sounded like until recently when I googled a Youtube video of Koala noises. It’s really quite mind-boggling when you hear the sound – and see the adorable little animal making it.
Both male and female mockingbirds sing, and are known for being exceptional imitators. They’ll often mimic the noises of birds much larger than themselves, and will sing throughout the day. Most interesting of all, they don’t always sing the same tune. Since they can mimic sounds, you will often hear them imitating everything from car alarms to frogs and creaky gates. It’s actually entertaining to listen to them. They’ll also mimic sounds of other birds like jays, hawks, and blackbirds, among others.
Mockingbirds continue to learn new sounds throughout their lives. Generally, most sounds they make are technically whistles, but they’ll also make sounds like scolds, trills, and rasps.
#5: Humpback Whales
Humpback whales have beautiful singing voices, which is why they do it to attract mates. However, new research shows that these majestic animals also sing to communicate locations.
Their singing voices are typically a blend of blasts, moans, grunts, and shrieks, and some are high frequency. They are very entertaining to listen to.
If you get the chance, I urge you to watch a youtube video of them singing. I’m sure you’ll find them just as beautiful as I do. And most interesting of all, because sound travels four times faster in water than in air, whales can attract mates from afar. There’s plenty more fish in the sea for these guys!
Canaries definitely deserve a place on this list for their splendid singing skills. This small bird has a surprisingly big voice. It imitates both musical instruments and human voices to produce a range of different songs. Canaries sing in all seasons, except summer, so they can focus on replacing all of their feathers.
According to experts, the roller canary and American singer canary are the best singers in the family. Although you’d have to listen to them for yourself to form the best opinion.
I’ve never had a pet canary, but I know a friend who has two or three of them as pets, and believe me, the sounds they make are truly terrific. I love listening to them sing whenever I go round.
Hummingbirds make a wide range of wonderful sounds, some of which are made by their wings and some through their mouth. First, let me address that famous humming sound.
The bird’s humming sound isn’t actually a vocal sound, but one produced by the beating of their wings, which creates a high-pitched sound when flying. But that isn’t the only sound a hummingbird makes. They also make vocal sounds.
All hummingbirds sing. They typically make short, soft calls. However, the specific sound a hummingbird makes depends on the species. For example, a black-chinned hummingbird has more of a soft call note, while a rufous hummingbird has more of a musical chirp. Sounds vary depending on the species.
And the reason for these unique sounds? Of course…to attract mates. In fact, males will go to all levels to attract that special someone, combining singing and sounds with stunts like flashing their feathers as they fly. All in the name of love!
#8: Killer Whales
For some, it may sound eery, but there’s no denying those high-pitched vocalizations are a pleasure to hear. Most interestingly, researchers can distinguish resident orcas from transient orcas just from the sounds they make – which is typically calls, clicks, and whistles.
Research suggests that killer whales are able to imitate human speech and copy unfamiliar sounds produced by other killer whales. In the case of human speech, scientists reveal orcas were able to utter words such as “hello,” and “bye-bye.” With regards to mimicking orca sounds, a sound detected was that similar to blowing a raspberry.
Further research also sheds light on how different pods of orcas have different dialects. And just to make things even more compelling, reports claim orcas can also imitate the sounds of sea lions and bottlenose dolphins.
Another bird with a beautiful singing voice, it’s the nightingale. This bird has inspired many stories and poems, and enchanted listeners for centuries with its stunning melody.
In describing the sound of a nightingale, one would say it sounds like a blend of tweets, trills, whistles, and gurgles. And it is this variety of sounds that make it impressive to listen to. According to experts, this complexity may be due to the enlarged higher and lower areas of their brand, giving it the ability to produce complex sounds.
Of all the bird sounds, I would have to say the nightingale’s is one of my favorites. It really is terrific to listen to.
It’s quite hard to believe that a bird could sound anything like a violin…but that’s precisely how a manakin sounds when it flaps its wings. This small, colorful bird is native to Central and South America. Males vibrate their wings to create violin-like sounds in a bid to attract females. Pretty smart, huh?
Pairs of male manakins also sing beautiful duets to attract females. Compared to other birds like the nightingale and canary, the vocalization isn’t as profound, but I feel it’s still worth noting since it’s able to make sound both with its voice and wings. And that’s something not all birds can do.
#11: Red Foxes
Red foxes are the most common foxes in the world, but one thing that’s not so common: it has over 20 different calls. Its defining call is barking – yes, barking, like a dog. According to scientists, different foxes bark differently to allow them to recognize each other in the wild. They also bark to interact with rivals.
But barking isn’t the only noise they make. They also make super sweet noises to find mates and communicate within their family groups.
Red foxes are deemed highly communicative, especially when compared to other species of fox. That is why it’s rather easy to catch them in the act of vocalizing. Plus, they are known for squealing when they’re excited – which is another adorable noise.
I don’t know how many times I’ve watched those cute baby fox videos you see on social media. They make super cute sounds! Then again, don’t all baby animals? I know my kitten did!
#12: Tree Frogs
Tree frogs are another species that sings. They can typically be heard singing during the summer months in the evenings, and they do it specifically to establish their territories and attract mates. According to researchers, a tree frog’s tunes differ according to the weather.
They are able to make sound by letting airflow go through the lungs and into the mouth, causing the vocal cords to touch. Interestingly, a tree frog’s vocal muscles make up 15 percent of its entire body mass. No wonder he’s such a terrific singer!
The sound a tree frog makes is made from air sacs located below the mouth. If you watch carefully, you’ll notice these sacs inflating and deflating as he makes a sound. Air from the lungs flows into the air sacs, increasing the volume of the frog’s voice.
It’s quite an incredible sound, so if you have the chance, be sure to check out a video on Youtube to hear how tree frogs sing.
I can’t exactly skip this one, can I? With their adorable coo-ing sound, doves have a truly beautiful voice. It’s just so soothing and relaxing. Pigeons make this noise, too!
I remember a few years ago, in my old house, a dove built a nest outside my window, and I got to hear her coo every morning. It was such a delight to listen to each morning.
If you have doves nesting near your window, be sure to open the window and take in the sound. It’s like therapy for your mind and soul!
Male and female Trumpeter Swans have a distinctive “oh-OH” call, which is used to defend territories, pair their family together, and sound a warning. Young swans have a higher pitched call. It isn’t until they’re around eight months old that they develop their adult tone.
Not everyone will agree that this sound is beautiful, but I find it interesting and exotic – like most animal voices really. To be honest, I don’t think I can recall one animal voice I strongly dislike. They’re all beautiful to me! But these are the most beautiful if I have to pick!
And just so you know, that thing you heard about swans singing before they die? It’s a myth. It turns out, this is just something that was made up in literature, but there’s apparently no truth in it.
I don’t know about you but I love the sounds cats make. Or at least, the sound my cat makes. Between the purring and meowing, what’s not to love? She’s adorable! The purring is definitely my fave sound. When she curls up next to me at night, there’s just something so soothing about hearing her purr. It makes me fall straight to sleep!
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