New Course: Connecting People with Nature through Birds

Date: June 3 – 6, 2013
Location: National Conservation Training Center, Shepherdstown, WV

Birds make a perfect means for connecting people to nature. Birds are awake and active when we are; they are relatively easy to spot and hear; and, birds are in every backyard. Moreover, research has shown that the ability to identify birds heightens awareness and creates a sense of stewardship among youth and adults. In this course, explore activities that engage people in bird watching. Even if you are not a birder you will find these activities easy to implement. Specifically, participants will learn to teach others basic bird identification; explore a variety of programs that connect people to nature including citizen science and mist netting birds; discuss current bird conservation issues; and discover the possibilities of inspiring interest in birds through Flying WILD.

After completing this course you will be able to:

  • Apply various observation skills to identify common bird species by both sight and sound.
  • Apply planning strategies in developing birding programs for various audiences, including the use of Flying Wild and other bird education curriculum.
  • Utilize banding stations for bird education outreach.
  • Apply education outreach strategies for engaging under-served youth in conservation and related natural resource careers.
  • Utilize inquiry and citizen science methods and programs as tools
  • for bird education outreach.
  • Discuss key bird conservation issues in the USA.
  • Make their visitor facility more birder-friendly.

Who should attend: Educators, outdoor recreation planners, naturalists/interpreters, community outreach specialists, extension agents, resource managers, and others involved in educating people about birds.

Cost: Tuition for FWS, NPS, and BLM is prepaid. Each participant’s office is responsible for expenses related to travel.  For participants from other agencies and organizations there is a tuition charge of $796.00.

Cancellation policy: All class applicants, including Service employees, who cancel their reservation *four (4) weeks or less* from the start of class without providing a substitute, will be charged in full for both tuition and lodging.  Substitutions must be provided at the time of cancellation and will not be permitted two weeks or less from the start of a class.

How to Apply: Register through DOI Learn system:

Course registration deadline is March 31, 2013. *After this date, please call for availability.

Contact: Michelle Donlan
Division: Education Outreach
Phone: (304) 876-7685