An introduction to ornithology and birdwatching
Time: 10:00 - 12:00
Brenna Boyle (B.Sc Hons Dunelm, M.Sc DIC) is a zoologist, wildlife guide and environmental teacher. She runs Wild Capital; London's wildlife discovery service and also works for two urban environmental education charities.
This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
This course has now finished
What is the course about?
This course is an introduction to the varied, and often surprising, world of birds. It explores bird evolution, behaviour and conservation. The focus will be on birds of the UK, but with an overview of the diversity of birds which can be found throughout the globe. The course will also provide practical identification techniques, an auditory introduction to birdsong and tips on birdwatching.
This is a live online course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera is best (e.g. a PC/laptop/iMac/MacBook), or a tablet/iPad/smart phone/iPhone if you don't have a computer.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.
What will we cover?
- Bird evolution, structure and diversity
- Behaviour, migration and conservation
- Identification, birdsong and tips for birdwatching at home or in your local area.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
- Describe how birds evolved into the vast diversity of species we see today
- Understand some key physical components of birds, including feather structure and function
- Recognise different bird behaviours (breeding behaviour, calling and singing, finding food, avoiding predators)
- Describe some of the mechanisms of migration
- Outline several of the main threats and conservation initiatives for birds across the world
- Improve your skills at identifying London birds through practical techniques
- Recognise the songs of several common London species.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
This is an introductory course and is open to all. No prior knowledge of the subject is required. However, you will need a good grasp of English to keep up with the course and participate fully in discussions.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
The main format will be an illustrated presentation, with some learning activities, discussion, questions and answers. Videos and recordings of birdsong will be played. There will be no work required outside of the class. Guidance to finding further information will be provided each week, as well as suggestions of where in London to practice birdwatching.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
Handouts will be available in advance of the class to view, download and print from Google Classroom. A notepad or device for note taking would be useful.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
HS215 Trees in early summer
HS090 An introduction to ornithology and birdwatching
HS263 Top garden plants
HS264 Summer trees
HS172 An introduction to London's woodlands
HS265 Discover Hill Garden and Pergola, Hampstead: an illustrated talk
HS266 Discover Battersea Park: an illustrated talk.
Brenna Boyle (B.Sc Hons Dunelm, M.Sc DIC) is a zoologist, wildlife guide and environmental teacher. She runs Wild Capital and also works for two urban environmental education charities. She is often to be found wading in either the River Thames or Deptford Creek. Her favourite species is the Long-tailed Tit.
Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.