An introduction to ornithology with birdwatching
Time: 10:30 - 12:30
Location: Keeley Street
This course has now started
What is the course about?
This course is an introduction to the rich and varied world of birds. 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 general tips on birdwatching. During the fieldtrips we practice spotting birds, working though identifying them and also understanding the behaviours that we witness. The fieldtrip locations are St James Park, The WaterWorks Centre Nature Reserve & Middlesex Filter Beds in the Lea Valley, and Richmond Park (Please note that this is subject to change, and may not be in this order).
What will we cover?
- Bird evolution, structure and diversity
- Bird ecology and behaviour, including migration
- Identification techniques and general tips for birdwatching
- Practicing birdwatching on three fieldtrips.
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
- Develop practical techniques to identifying birds
- Begin to recognise birdsong and have the tools to continue building this knowledge.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
This is an introductory course and is open to all.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
This course will take place partly in the classroom and partly outdoors at 3 fieldtrip locations in London. The main format of the classroom sessions will be an illustrated presentation, with some interactive 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?
A notepad or device for note taking would be useful. If you have your own binoculars and bird ID guide, then you are encouraged to bring these along to the fieldtrips. The tutor will have binoculars and an ID guide to share with the group.
You will need to pay for your own travel to and from the fieldtrip locations.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
Check the City Lit website for other nature courses, including Brenna's other courses.
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.