Although I wasn’t initially aware of this myth, a technician in my lab informed me that an oft-quoted scientific myth is that a duck’s quack doesn’t echo. Now, as a student of acoustics, I found that hard to believe. And indeed, a research team at the University of Salford decided to actually test this theory by putting a duck named Daisy in a sound chamber and making it quack.
After recording the quack (and any echos that might have arisen) they came to the conclusion that a duck’s quack DOES echo, its just usually too soft for most people to hear. Therefore, the myth probably arose that way. Also, ducks don’t usually go quacking around large reflective surfaces which are best for hearing echos.
Listen to the “echoing quack” here.
And here’s Daisy the duck getting into the holiday spirit.
Well, I’m a little curious as to how they made the duck quack right into the microphone. I’m imagining them squeezing poor Daisy like a squeak-toy!