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Course: Winter Birding by Ear


Golden-crowned kinglet

February 10 , 6:00 pm 8:00 pm

Pre-registration is required and space is limited. Our courses usually fill several days before they begin—don’t miss your chance to study with Audubon!

The ability to bird by ear, recognizing and identifying various species from their vocalizations, is of invaluable assistance in the field. Most of the available instructional material on bird songs centers around the songs and calls heard during the typical breeding season, in spring and early summer. But there are as many or more birds, individuals and species, present in winter than any other season. Those winter birds call—dawn calls, contact calls, flight calls, alarm calls—and sometimes offer their full songs. Winter bird vocalizations are a bit arcane, and they are seldom emphasized in recordings and guides. Paul Franklin seeks to remedy this situation with this course.

Textbook: The National Geographic Field Guide to the Birds of North America will serve as the text for this course; while we encourage students to bring their own, more than enough copies are available for use here in the office.

Where and when do we meet? This six-week class will meet at our Birmingham offices on Monday nights (2/10, 2/17, 2/24, 3/2, 3/9, 3/16), 6:00–8:00 p.m. Our office is located on the second floor of 3720 Fourth Avenue South. (Ample and well-lit parking is available in back, just behind Rodney Scott’s Whole Hog BBQ.) 

We will spend much of our time learning in the field—locating birds and attending to their songs, then learning to describe, recognize, and remember the sounds we hear. Field trips will be at least once a week either on Saturdays and/or early weekday mornings, and we will try to accommodate students’ schedules. It is important students attend the first class on February 10th as many organizational details will be determined, including the best times for field trips. The instructor will send a group email throughout the class to update about meeting and field trip times.

Cost:  Your one-time registration fee ($75/members; $100/non-members) covers all six meetings. (While you are not required to attend each class, do note that we cannot refund individuals for partial attendance.)

Registration: Class size is limited to fifteen, so don’t delay! To register, click on the button above. If you’re new to our online system and don’t yet have a username and password, simply click the “X” on the pop up and fill out the basic form.

Accessibility: Wheelchair access and limited parking is available in the front of the building on Fourth Avenue South. If parking in the back parking lot, there are stairs to get into the building.

Questions? Email the Outreach & Communications Director, or call 205-719-3678, option 3.

Please, no pets in the classroom. Only service animals are welcome.