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: TBD for 2016
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 emily.snode.brenneman@birdconservancy.org.

Chatfield Banding Station
Operated in partnership with Audubon Society of Greater Denver
Dates: April to May
Location: Audubon Center on the southwest side of Chatfield State Park, Littleton, CO
Visit: Registration is not required for individuals. Schedule field trips at: education@denveraudubon.org or (303) 973-9530.

Chico Banding Station
Operated in partnership with Chico Basin Ranch
Dates: Fall
Location: Research station at Chico Basin Ranch, 35 miles southeast of Colorado Springs, CO
Visit: Reservations required. Schedule visits at: learning@chicobasinranch.com or (719) 634-2305 or (719) 338-8651.

Fort Collins Banding Station
Dates: April to May; and September to mid-October
Location: Junction of the Poudre River Trail and path on the west side of the Fort Collins Museum of Discovery, 408 Mason Ct., Fort Collins, CO
Visit: Registration is not required for individuals. Pre-registration is requested for groups. Contact Jeff Birek at jeff.birek@birdconservancy.org or (970) 482-1707 x25.

Ela Banding Station
Operated in partnership with Grand Valley Audubon Society
Dates: September to mid-October
Location: Ela Wildlife Sanctuary, 608 Dike Rd., Grand Junction, CO
Visit: To schedule a program, contact Cary Atwood at catwood814@gmail.com.

Ridgway Banding Station
Operated in partnership with Black Canyon Audubon Society
Dates: TBD for 2016
Location: Ridgway State Park, 28555 US-550, Ridgway, CO
Visit: To schedule a program, contact Arlene Crawford at ourayoutpost918@hotmail.com.

Nebraska Banding Stations

Chadron Banding Station
Dates: TBD for 2016
Location: Chadron State Park, 15951 Hwy. 385, Chadron, NE
Visit: To schedule a program, contact Alexandra Mayes at alexandra.mayes@birdconservancy.org or (308) 783-1019.

Wildcat Hills Banding Station
Dates: TBD for 2016
Location: Wildcat Hills State Recreation Area, Gering, NE
Visit: To schedule a program, contact Alexandra Mayes at alexandra.mayes@birdconservancy.org 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
tyler.edmondson@birdconservancy.org

Volunteer program information:
Peggy Watson
Outreach & Volunteer Coordinator
(303) 659-4348 x10
peggy.watson@birdconservancy.org