Friday, February 18, 2011

#38 Conservation Tip: Report Banded Birds

There’s something exciting about seeing a banded bird, knowing that someone has taken information about that particular individual, hoping to find out where it has travelled or how long it lives.

If you see a banded bird – a goose, sandpiper or maybe a raptor - take careful note of the band(s). On which leg is the band? What color is it? If there are letters or numbers, write them down in careful order. Also note the date, time and location of your finding. If you know the bird’s gender or age, be sure to note that too.

Scientists band a whole lot of birds, but get back only a small percentage of data for their efforts. You are greatly helping the cause of research to report your findings. Report data to the national Bird Banding Lab, website:
photo © adrian binns


  1. Thanks for the post, Adrian! I've been fortunate to be on both sides of such discoveries, as the bander and the reporter, and can testify to what a thrill it is to fill in some of the blanks in the lives of birds.

  2. About 10 years ago, my friend Lanny Chambers trapped an out-of-range adult female Rufous Hummingbird in my yard in Missouri. She already had a band! She'd been banded the previous year in Louisiana. It was a great adventure!

  3. It is fascinating to find out just where they were banded. This one, that was seen in NJ, if I recall correctly was banded in the province of Nunavut and was about 3 years old.

    This is from a converstaion on Facebook I had with Paul Guris. Paul wrote....

    Anita and I just photographed several birds up near Shark River with the same type of neck bands. The site to report them online is:

    And the specific site to report geese is:

    Thanks Paul, maybe you had the same one, as it was in that general region (at one of the lakes) that this was photographed