Each year I run field trips to help people learn the songs and calls of birds.
Individual sessions are usually between two and four hours long, mostly on Saturday mornings and often spaced about two or three weeks apart. By attending multiple sessions you can build your knowledge over the months, observe the different seasons and check out different sites.
Beginners are always welcome, as are those who know some species but want to learn more.
We do take time to look at birds’ plumage and behaviour, and we talk about their habitat preferences, relative abundance etc. – but we always make sure we’ve taken stock of any vocalisations each bird has made. There is opportunity to test your knowledge, ask questions and talk about different ways of remembering the different birds we hear.
Each year, I keep a running total of all the species we find, together with a short description of those we heard. This means that I can send out a ‘crib sheet’ to help us all remember what we learnt.
The sessions fall into two categories:
- A series of seasonal visits to the Lymington-Keyhaven Nature Reserve
- A Birds in Spring course which starts early in the year and runs through till July