("Xeno-canto", "XC") is a website for sharing recordings of wildlife sounds from all across the world. It was started in 2005 by Bob Planqué and Willem-Pier Vellinga (see below for some history). Xeno-canto is maintained by a small team of admins (BobWPSander PieterseJonathon Jongsma and Rolf de By) with crucial assistance from Naturalis Biodiversity Center, especially Ruud Altenburg, and all of the xeno-canto community. Xeno-canto is run by the Xeno-canto foundation (or officially Stichting Xeno-canto voor natuurgeluiden), a charity (Dutch "ANBI") from the Netherlands.


Xeno-canto has a number of basic principles.

  • Everyone can make a valuable contribution, by adding recordings of course, but also by sharing opinions, questioning identifications, solving mystery recordings, spotting bugs, programming, offering advice or experience, and by spreading the word.
  • Recordings are shared under various Creative Commons licenses. These differ between recordings (they are always shown) but in general the allow distribution provided recordists are credited and provided no commercial proceeds are sought. Read more about them in the terms of use.
  • Any recording is welcome. If you want to add your recording, of whatever quality, it is welcome, and will remain in the collection provided the identification is 100% correct. (If the identification is not correct you will likely at some point receive an email that a fellow user has questioned the ID.)
  • Xeno-canto values argued opinions, not authority. Identification of recordings remains tentative, and recordings are continuously discussed and revised. When the identification of some recording is questioned, the recording is taken out of the main collection until the matter is resolved. These discussions are always visible on the recording's page and in the forum.
  • Wherever possible we use open source resources.

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Geographic extend
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