Birding Classes

 

The Education Committee arranges classes for chapter members and the public to improve your birding skills and enhance your bird watching experience. Knowledgeable instructors provide engaging classroom lectures and guide field trips to gain practical experience. Past classes have included Birding By Ear, Avian Treasure Hunt (migrants), Beginning Birding, Raptor ID, and Gull ID.

Find the descriptions for each class and details about enrollment policies below. Join a class to expand your bird-watching skills and knowledge. Before enrolling in a class, please be sure to read the Class Registration Policies.

Upcoming Birding Classes

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September 2019

2019 Fall Avian Treasure Hunt by Juan-Carlos Solis

September 19, 2019 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
|Recurring Event (See all)

One event on September 26, 2019 at 7:00 pm

One event on September 21, 2019 at 8:00 am

One event on September 28, 2019 at 8:00 am

Lafayette Library and Learning Center, Oak Room and Field Location, 3491 Mt Diablo Blvd
Lafayette, CA 94549 United States
+ Google Map

Prepare for the migrant treasure hunt and sharpen your birding skills by better understanding local bird distribution patterns in time and space during the fall. We'll review how seasonal changes in various Bay Area habitats influence the birds you'll expect to find in the field, with a strong emphasis on birdsong and behavior. You'll get practical birding tips on what to look for throughout the seasons when "hunting" for migratory birds. At the end of this course you'll be better…

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Raptor Identification by Pamela Llewellyn

September 24, 2019 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
|Recurring Event (See all)

One event on October 8, 2019 at 7:00 pm

One event on September 29, 2019 at 8:00 am

One event on October 13, 2019 at 8:00 am

Lafayette Library and Learning Center, Oak Room and Field Location, 3491 Mt Diablo Blvd
Lafayette, CA 94549 United States
+ Google Map

Join raptor specialist Pamela Llewellyn for this two-week workshop while she guides you through basic identification and natural history of the diurnal birds of prey seen in the San Francisco Bay Area and the surrounding area. Enrollment required.

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November 2019

iNaturalist, a Tutorial for Citizen Scientists by Kendall Oei

November 17, 2019 @ 8:00 am - 12:00 pm
|Recurring Event (See all)

One event on November 17, 2019 at 8:00 am

Save Mount Diablo office in Walnut Creek, 1901 Olympic Blvd #320
Walnut Creek, CA 94596 United States
+ Google Map

Naturalist and nature videographer Kendall Oei will convert you into an active, and interactive, citizen scientist in 90 minutes. An early adaptor to the revolutionary digital app, iNaturalist, developed by Bay Area naturalists and now used globally, Kendall will walk us through the iNaturalist website and the phone app, showing us how we can each become a resource to science. Enrollment required.

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August 2020

SF Bay Bird Observatory – Sparrows in the Mist: Complex Winter Social Behavior in a Little Brown Bird

August 20, 2020 @ 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm

    Birdy Hour Speaker Series Expand your knowledge of birds, birding, science, and conservation by joining us for virtual talks and discussions. These events are free and family-friendly! Sparrows in the Mist: Complex Winter Social Behavior in a Little Brown Bird by Dr. Bruce Lyon August 20, 2020 at 4:30pm Register here

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September 2020

SF Bay Bird Observatory – Birding: Love at First Sight

September 3, 2020 @ 5:00 pm - 6:30 pm

    Birdy Hour Speaker Series Expand your knowledge of birds, birding, science, and conservation by joining us for virtual talks and discussions. These events are free and family-friendly! Birding: Love at First Sight by Sebastian Casarez September 3, 2020 at 5pm Register here

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Golden Gate Audubon Online Class – Evolution of Birds

September 29, 2020 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 7:00 pm on Tuesday, repeating until September 29, 2020

This science-based course offered by the Golden Gate Audubon Society is for curious adult learners who have some birding experience. The focus is on avian evolution – from the modern theory of evolution, the evolutionary processes that have resulted in over 10,000 species of birds today, and geological events that have been much of the cause of today’s avian multitude.   Six (6) Tuesday evening classes by Zoom, August 25, September 1, 8, 15, 22, 29, 7 to 9 pm Instructors:…

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October 2020

Using eBird (Virtual Tutorial)

October 22, 2020 @ 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
CA United States + Google Map

eBird is among the world’s largest biodiversity-related science projects, with more than 100 million bird sightings contributed each year by eBirders around the world. A collaborative enterprise with hundreds of partner organizations, thousands of regional experts, and hundreds of thousands of users, eBird is managed by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. This tutorial is aimed at new users.  It will introduce the features and navigation of the site, illustrate how to use the site to explore hotspots, species and other…

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November 2020

Bay Area Raptor Rundown

November 6, 2020 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Free

Learn to identify raptors on the coast and in the Santa Cruz mountains during the migration season. Join Peninsula Open Space Trust (POST), as we learn about birds of prey this fall with local Naturalist Jeff Caplan, director of Common Language Nature. Raptors play an integral role in the health of our ecosystems! Learn how to identify migratory and resident raptors when out on the coast or hiking in the Santa Cruz mountains. Jeff focuses on mindfulness, curiosity and bird language to…

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Golden Gate Audubon Online Class – Introduction to Avian Anatomy and Physiology

November 10, 2020 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 7:00 pm on Tuesday, repeating until November 10, 2020

A science-based course for curious adult learners who have some birding experience. An overview of what makes birds unique, including feathers and flight; how birds breathe and how they produce song; their amazing hearts and circulatory system; how they feed, digest, and excrete; how they reproduce and raise their young; how they migrate and navigate. We will look at some comparison and contrasts to mammals, and we will explore resources for continued learning. Six Tuesday evening classes by Zoom, October…

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May 2021

Bird Identification Techniques Workshop 2021—Part 1

May 24 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
$100

There are many challenges to becoming a birder, particularly if you want to know what everything you are looking at is! In other words, you want to put a name to a face. The problem is that it does take a lot of practice; the good thing is that practice is birding, and that is fun! One major challenge is that we focus so much of field marks that sometimes we do not see the forest for the trees. The…

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Bird Identification Techniques Workshop 2021—Part 2

May 26 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
$100

There are many challenges to becoming a birder, particularly if you want to know what everything you are looking at is! In other words, you want to put a name to a face. The problem is that it does take a lot of practice; the good thing is that practice is birding, and that is fun! One major challenge is that we focus so much of field marks that sometimes we do not see the forest for the trees. The…

Find out more »
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Class Registration Policies

The Education Committee has attempted to establish fair and equitable policies for class registration. To seek clarification prior to registering for a class, or to suggest changes to our policies, please contact the Education Committee Chair at

Enrollment Preferences

  1. MDAS members have first priority in opportunities to enroll in MDAS classes. Typically, enrollment will begin at a MDAS monthly meeting, with sign-ups taken on a first-come-first-served basis. Registration is not complete until payment is made.
  2. Registration will then be made available through the website or through phone/email contact with the class registrar, as identified in the online class description. Once again, registration is not complete until payment is made.
  3. Announcements will also be made in the monthly Quail newsletter, with the same registration information provided there.
  4. Next, instructors may place announcements on their personal websites, and direct students to the MDAS registration procedures.
  5. Thereafter, if there are class openings remaining, public announcements through other media may be made to inform the general public.
  6. A waiting list will be created, if needed, based upon time and date of email request or other time-stamped communications medium.

Payment

  1. Payment may be made by personal check at a MDAS meeting or mailed to the class registrar.
  2. Payment may also be made through PayPal on the website, or through other means of electronic delivery as may be established.

Cancellations and Refunds

  1. Students may cancel their registration at any time, but cancellation refunds will only be given if the cancelled registration can be filled from a waiting list.
  2. If an entire class needs to be cancelled, all registered students will promptly receive a refund.
  3. Registration in a class shall constitute acceptance of the above terms.