Bird Banding

Bird Conservancy of the Rockies conducts banding at three stations each spring in Colorado and seven stations each fall in Colorado and Nebraska. Teachers and group leaders can arrange a visit for groups of students (see details under each station below), and individual visitors are welcome.

Note: Banding dates are subject to change. Stations must close for high winds, heavy precipitation or other inclement weather.

Colorado Banding Stations

Barr Lake Banding Station
Dates: 8/27 – 10/16; Open 6 days/week EXCEPT the following dates:

  • Closed Thursday September 1st
  • Closed Monday September 5th
  • Closed Monday September 12th
  • Closed Monday September 19th
  • Closed Monday September 26th
  • Closed Tuesday October 4th
  • Closed Wednesday October 12th

Location: West side of Barr Lake State Park, 13401 Picadilly Rd., Brighton, CO
Visit: Registration is not required for individuals. Pre-registration is requested for groups over 10 people. Visit the Schools page for information on field trips. To register as a school group, contact Emily Snode-Brenneman at (303) 659-4348 or

Chatfield Banding Station
Operated in partnership with Audubon Society of Greater Denver
Dates: April 27 – June 2.  Closed May 13-14 and 30 (Memorial Day)
Location: Audubon Center on the southwest side of Chatfield State Park, Littleton, CO
Visit: Registration is not required for individuals. Schedule field trips at: or (303) 973-9530.

Chico Banding Station
Operated in partnership with Chico Basin Ranch
Spring Dates: April 22 – May 22.  Open Mon – Sat plus Sun. May 22.
Fall Dates: Sep. 1 – Oct. 1, Open Mon – Sat
Location: Research station at Chico Basin Ranch, 35 miles southeast of Colorado Springs, CO
Visit: Reservations required. Schedule visits at: or (719) 634-2305 or (719) 338-8651.
For additional information, contact Juliana Frost

Ridgway Banding Station
Operated in partnership with Black Canyon Audubon Society  and Colorado Parks and Wildlife
Dates: September 9-16
Location: Ridgway State Park, 28555 US-550, Ridgway, CO
Visit: To schedule a program, contact Nancy Gobris at or (478)361-0954.

Nebraska Banding Stations

Chadron Banding Station
Dates: Aug. 29 – Oct. 15; open Labor Day weekend
Location: Chadron State Park, 15951 Hwy. 385, Chadron, NE
Visit: To schedule a program, contact Amber Schiltz at or (308) 783-1019

Wildcat Hills Banding Station
Dates: Aug. 29 – Oct. 15
Special “Open House” on September 10
Location: Wildcat Hills State Recreation Area, Gering, NE
Visit: To schedule a program, contact Amber Schiltz at or (308) 783-1019

Visit the Nebraska Programs page for more information on our Nebraska banding stations.

About Bird Banding

Bird banding has been used to study wild birds since the late 1800s. Data obtained at banding stations has greatly increased understanding of bird migration and anatomy.

Banding stations are placed in sites where birds congregate in large numbers during migration. These stopovers generally have excellent habitat that offers food and a safe place to rest. Scientists set up a series of mist nets to harmlessly trap birds. When a bird is removed from the net, its leg is fitted with a small metal band, and the bird is weighed and measured to evaluate its condition. Each band has a unique number on it so that if the bird is recaptured or found later, scientists will know when and where it was banded.

Banding stations also serve as outdoor classrooms to enhance the public’s appreciation of birds. The stations provide valuable opportunities for volunteers and students to gain experience in scientific field techniques.

In the last 25-plus years, the Bird Conservancy has banded more than 100,000 birds. Read highlights from recent bird banding seasons on our blog.

Bird Banding program information:
Tyler Edmondson
Education Director
(303) 659-4348 x15

Volunteer program information:
Alexandra Mayes
Outreach & Volunteer Coordinator
(303) 659-4348 x10