Mad Island Banding

April 8, 2013 by Pete Marra


This week over 100 kindergartners visited the Mad Island Preserve banding station to learn about migratory birds!

Jordan Rutter, from the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center, hosted the Palacios kindergarten classes with the help of local volunteers. The children learned about bird banding and scientific research though fun games and activities. Jordan designed a scavenger hunt which included finding a bird that was flying, a bird that was eating, and a bird that was walking. During the bird banding demonstrations, the kids were thrilled to see migratory birds up close. Jordan showed them measurements that ornithologists take including how the wing is measured, weight is taken, and amount of fat calculated. Kids even had their wing span measured and got to leave with their own wrist bands!

Even though they live nearby, several children had never been to a natural place like the preserve before. Next week will be full of all day field trips for local middle and high school students.

Meanwhile, the banders are catching new species every few days (44 so far!) but are still waiting for the big push of birds during the second half of April.

Number of Captures: 430
Number of Species Captured: 44
Number of Species Seen: 193