Photo/Illutration“Sound of Amami,” a PR video series produced by the Kagoshima prefectural government (From YouTube)

KAGOSHIMA--Chirps of indigenous birds, exotic plants swinging in the breeze, gentle ripples of waves lapping beaches and the distinctive local tongue spoken by islanders.

These are just some of the things that give the Amami island chain the allure captured in “Sound of Amami,” a series of videos that the Kagoshima prefectural government has uploaded to YouTube.

The effort is intended to raise the profile of the subtropical chain lying between the main island of Kyushu and Okinawa Prefecture, as Japan seeks to list two of the islands, Amami-Oshima and Tokunoshima, as a World Natural Heritage site this summer along with the northern part of Okinawa Prefecture’s main island and Iriomotejima island.

According to the prefectural government, footage was recorded by a sophisticated device that can record sounds coming from all directions to enable viewers to have a real sense of being there.

Chiyoko Onishi, who heads the Kagoshima prefectural government’s section to promote the registration of the Amami islands as a World Natural Heritage site, said, “We are appealing not only to tourists with the videos but also locals to help them rediscover the charms of their islands.”

The prefectural government spent about 5 million yen ($46,550) on producing five versions of PR videos of the islands of Amami-Oshima, Kikaijima, Tokunoshima, Okinoerabujima and Yoronjima. The videos range in length from 30 seconds to 10 minutes.

The footage highlights flora and fauna indigenous to the islands, including a virgin forest of mangrove spreading in the middle of Amami-Oshima and the Amami rabbit that is designated a "special natural monument" by the central government. The longest version shows many clips of islanders speaking in their dialect as an effort to illustrate that Amami culture was born out of its rich nature.

Among the filming crew was Futoshi Hamada, a veteran photographer and videographer based on Amami-Oshima. Hamada, a native of the island, is known for his series of photo collections on the rare animals and landscapes of the islets in the island chain.

One of Hamada’s videos, titled “Child Rearing of Amami rabbits,” was named as one of the highly honored videos by the international contest Nature’s Best Photography Asia last year.

"Sound of Amami" incorporates footage of some of his past works.

The prefectural government plans to show the videos at airports and tourist facilities, and to release the videos with subtitles in foreign languages.