Experience the fun of bird banding first-hand at Audubon

Submitted Photo “Feeding Time,” Kathrin Swoboda of Vienna, Va.’s photo of a female cardinal and a male bluebird feeding its young, was a finalist in an Audubon Nature Photography Contest.

On Saturday mornings from April 30 through May 21, the public is invited to join ornithologists on the west side of Audubon Community Nature Center to observe them banding birds.

Bird banding is an established technique used to discover details about the behaviors of birds.

Those interested can drop in any time between 7 and 11 a.m. to learn exactly how this is done and why. Those interested can come on their own or bring children. If the weather is too harsh for the safety of the birds, the nets will not be open.

Bird scientists capture migrating and resident birds in “mist” nets, so-called because they are so fine they are almost like mist.

Those attending can watch how the scientists fit them with identification bands, measure and weigh and then release them to go on with their lives. Some of those watching might be selected to help release a bird.

While not necessary to enjoy the demonstrations, those attending may want to bring bird guides and binoculars and remember to dress for the weather. Plan to listen closely to the scientists and follow their instructions carefully, as safety of the birds is the priority.

Come to the picnic pavilion on the west side of the Audubon property at 1600 Riverside Road, just east of Route 62 between Jamestown and Warren. Look for a “Bird Banding” sign at the entrance closer to Route 62. Drive in and park on the grass along the edge of the trees. Or park at the Nature Center parking lot and walk to trail over to the banding site, especially if it has been raining.

All of the bird banders — Emily Thomas Perlock, Dr. Scott Stoleson, and Don Watts — bring extensive experience and expertise to their tasks.

Audubon offers the demonstrations to the public free of charge, but donations are appreciated. No reservations are required. No dogs please. To learn the details of the bird banders’ backgrounds and donate, click through “Upcoming Programs” at AudubonCNC.org.

The public can observe bird scientists in action and birds up close at bird banding demonstrations every Saturday morning from April 30 through May 21 at the Audubon Community Nature Center. For information on submitting to and voting for the 2022 photo contest visit GoGoPhotoContest.com/ACNCPhotoContest.


Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)
Are you a paying subscriber to the newspaper? *


Starting at $4.62/week.

Subscribe Today