Picture of Bird Call Hands
How to use your hands to make the bird call sound.
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: Getting the hands in the proper position

The first section of this tutorial will show you how to correctly arrange your hands to get the proper sound.

Step 2: Put one hand on the other

Picture of Put one hand on the other
(I don't think that this should matter whether you're left or right handed, but if you are left handed and this feels unconfortable, please do the opposite hands as described)

Place the left edge of your right hand at the base of the fingers on the left hand.

Step 3: Move right hand down

Picture of Move right hand down
Now take your right hand and, pivoting on the left edge where your hands are touching, move it down onto the left hand.

You should not need to lift your hand to do this step.

Step 4: Cup hands and align thumbs

Picture of Cup hands and align thumbs
Take the fingertips on both hands and curl them around the other hand.

The thumb of the right hand will be lower down then the thumb of the left hand. Keeping your hands together, move the left thumb up so that both thumbs are aligned.

Your hands are now in the correct position to do the bird call.

Step 5: Proper blowing technique

The following steps teach you how to blow properly so that the hands will create the proper sound.

Step 6: Pucker Your Lips & Inhale

Picture of Pucker Your Lips & Inhale
Pucker your lips and hold your hands in front of them.


To inhale properly, try the following:

  • Though to play most instruments you breath from your chest, you will actually blow better here if you breathe from your throat (get a lot of air in your throat, but not any in your lungs. Basically, do a breath that gets your shoulders to move)
  • Hold the breath in puckered lips (again, if you play a woodwind instrument, you're encouraged to not do this. However, this technique works better here
  • Do not inhale with your hands already at your lips
BrandonT21 month ago

I'm 100% done with this. Every guide is the exact same and none of them work for me. I am done trying.

phisx1 year ago

i kind of did it not sure though : ( :

mammasboy1 year ago
HAHAHAHA, I DID IT :D thank you so much, been trying to do this for ages! finally got it :D

Me too! is this the first song to feature a hand-owl? after 1min 20
clax12274 years ago
if it dosen't work don't worry it took me a month of just watching people doing it now i'll make a cooing sound and the dove's will coo back :D
My friends and I do this in school all the time :). When there are a lot of people in the hallway everybody does it. I'll try and post a video.
I have been trying this for to years. I can't get it pls help me as in make a video
me neither maybe my hands are too fat or something cant seem to nail it
 Nice. Thanks for sharing this. It's so simple and fun to do!!!
eskimoboy5 years ago
wow... this is REALLY loud. A piece of advice: do not do this into the ear of a sleeping person. They may lash out and strike your hands into your face, giving you an unsightly black eye. :)
freakin sweet before i read this i could never bird call and now i can oh and can someone tell me how to give +1
u forgot 2 say that u have 2 lick ur thumbs where u r doing the bird call! i also cant belive that i got it as soon i finished reading it!!!!!
You don't have to lick your thumbs.
laxplaya106 years ago
This thing just won't work for me. most of my friends do it all the time and i've tried for about a month now and still can't do it
schetleft7 years ago
hand cooing is a difficult technique. i have been doing it for a few years, and i am not even close to mastering it.
Ive tried and Tried with my freinds telling my how and what to do and, it just never works but it does for them...! it is VERY frustrating!
could you please post a video i have been trying to learn this for years and i cant get it. iv looked on youtube for one but their arnt any.
YES PLEASE make a video or something. I cannot do this for the LIFE of me.
I cant figure out how to make the second part of the call. I've have been trying to do it for weeks now and I just can not do it. When I say the second part of the call I mean the finger movement. I just can not do it. Please help From, Confused 13 year old
i think what helped me is just moving the index finger up and down. try it!!1
e13377 years ago
You forgot to say to blow in from the top downward and have it a steady blow.
gladstone7 years ago
the way i got the sound is i put my lips at the bottom of the hole between the thumbs and moved it upwards while blowing untill it made a sound and make sure there are no gaps exept for the thumbs
Killa-X8 years ago
Well, I try doing this for 10 mins. First 9 mins was figuring the hands, and making an anoying loud PSSSSSS hollow sound. The last minute, I made 2, short whistles. So Pratice makes perfect :D
SeaLion8 years ago
how come it doesn't work for me...:( wut am i doing wrong...? :'(
These are really good instructions!!! Thx!
oh, man, It's like taking me 2 weeks, and I still can't do it!! I'm doing everything right!! This guide DID help a ton though. If anyone can give me tips, please do
To start you want your hands almost airtight except for the spot between your thumbs. Finding the proper placement of your lips over the knuckles is key. Blow over the space between you thumbs not into it. Think of it as if you were trying to whistle with the top of a beer or soda bottle. Blow over the hole at the right angle and you got it. Try blowing harder or softer and eventually you will get it. Good Luck!!
alt_f138 years ago
I'm surprised noone has commented yet. This is really well done, and seems rather original for instructables. Nice to find something where I don't need to leave my desk, distil water or order copious quantities of LEDs, voltage regs or U-235 from online suppliers to duplicate. Nice job.
Pearl8 years ago
it worked a lot easier for me to make this space smaller than pictured.