Tune Up: Birdsongs and Bird Behavior of the Roaring Fork Valley
Birders often concentrate most of their attention on what birds look like, but widening one’s sphere of observations to include vocalizations and behaviors can improve identification skills and add a deeper understanding of birds. In this course we will tune into what birds are saying with an emphasis of learning how to describe and visualize bird songs and calls to become better at “birding by ear.” We will also scrutinize what birds are doing and try to figure out why they are doing it. Our path to improving these birding dimensions will include extended field sessions in various Roaring Fork Valley habitats punctuated by short lectures, discussions, and activities.
This class requires advance registration to ensure appropriate planning for the field experience.
About the Instructor:
For over 20 years Bill Schmoker has been a middle school science teacher in Boulder as well as an instructor for the American Birding Association, National Audubon Society, The Nature Conservancy, and Boulder County Nature Association. Bill has embarked on two Arctic Ocean research expeditions as a PolarTREC Teacher and explored Greenland as a National Geographic Grosvenor Teacher Fellow. A widely published bird/wildlife photographer, author, and public speaker, Bill finds adventure and seeks new knowledge wherever he finds himself, whether gardening in his backyard, on an icebreaker at the North Pole, and everything in between.
Educators, when registering online for this class, please click on scholarship button and write EDUCATOR in the comments field so we can apply additional discount for you. The educators' discount is for teachers who take ACES classes for their professional development. Educator class cost is $95 or $50 for ACES members. This class is offered for 1 graduate college credit through Adams State University for additional cost that goes directly to ASU. In addition to registring through ACES, register here for graduate credit.
What To Bring:
Come prepared for a full day in the field, including non-strenuous hiking on and off trails. Please wear layered clothing for both the chilly morning and warmer daytime temperatures. Wear sturdy footwear and bring rain gear, sun hat, sunglasses, sunblock, a hearty sack lunch, snacks, and plenty of water. Bring your binoculars (or borrow ours) and your field guide (optional). We will provide binoculars, a scope, reference books, and handouts.
How To Get There:
Please bike or walk to ACES whenever possible! We understand that you'll need to drive to ACES for certain classes - 6am birding classes, photo field trips, etc. However, when you can, make it a personal challenge and see if you can drive fewer times than last year! Parking at ACES is limited.