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Are you interested in becoming a bird bander? Or are you already a bird bander who would like to further hone your skills? IBP offers beginner, advanced, and customized training classes.
A typical day at a IBP banding class is spent mist-netting and banding the captured bird in the morning, and in classroom lectures and discussions in the afternoon. The pace of the courses is fast, but there is also some free time.
The seven-day introductory courses are designed to provide both amateur birders and professional biologists with the skills necessary to participate in monitoring and research programs involving bird banding.
Skills taught include:
  • Operation of mist-nets and safe extraction of birds
  • Bird-handling skills
  • In-hand ageing and sexing techniques
  • Scoring and recording data using MAPS protocol and forms
Lectures and discussions cover:
  • Avian life histories, energetics, molts, and plumages
  • Banding ethics
  • The permitting process
  • The role of banding in research and monitoring
The four-day advanced classes are designed for experienced banders who wish to improve their sexing and ageing skills. These classes focus on understanding and identifying the differences between specific adult age classes using the Identification Guide to North American Birds by Peter Pyle. We also spend time addressing advanced skills such as skulling, refining the scoring of various characteristics, and interpreting these characteristics for age and sex determinations.
Before attending an advanced class, participants should be able to handle and set up mist-nets; be able to extract birds from mist-nets; and have familiarity with ageing hatch-year versus after-hatch-year birds.
IBP normally does not host classes, but rather provides world class bird banding instructors to teach classes organized by host individuals or organizations. If you are interested in hosting a class, please contact Danielle Kaschube for more information.
Photo Credits: Top of Page, IBP

What former students have said about our classes

A cross between my favorite college course and summer camp.
This course has opened up a whole new dimension to me in birding. I can truly say that this experience has changed my life.
I gained a new, mind-blowing appreciation for the diversity in birds! It was truly a privilege to participate in the course.
Bird Photo
One of the best teachers I have ever had.
This course was one of the highlights of my career. Holding a passerine in the hand brings an even greater appreciation for these species.
I couldn't ask for a more informative and enjoyable experience. What a great way to learn about the lives of birds!