Kalamazoo Valley Bird Observatory
The Kalamazoo Valley Bird Observatory (KVBO) has been using bird banding as a tool to help better understand migration patterns, longevity, dispersal, and stopover of both breeding and migrating birds at our two locations, the Kalamazoo Nature Center and Pitsfield, for over thirty years.
Kalamazoo Valley Bird Observatory Fall 2013 Migration Banding Report
- read/download the full report here.
Why Band Birds?
Banding birds allows researches to track and monitor migration patterns as wells as population changes. In addition, birds are indicators- they make ideal research subjects for looking at changes in the environment, such as changing climate. We work with and share this data with a multitude of different banding programs and institutions, tracking individual birds from state-to-state and even internationally.
Banding is done by meticulously trained and certified bird banders. Banding involves recording data such as weight, wing length, age, and gender. Then a small, light weight, band with a 9-digit code is placed on the bird’s leg. Many studies show that the bird is not negatively effected in anyway by the band. Processing a bird takes less than a minute. The bird’s well being and stress reduction are top priority. If the bird is recaptured, we can gain valuable knowledge about how the bird traveled.
A banding data sheet Some tools of the trade
Check out the youtube video of KVBO director Rich Keith banding a belted kingfisher at Fort Custer Training Center.
Read the article in the Winter 2011 edition of The Wolverine Guard magazine, "Saving a Special Songbird" by Angela Simpson and featuring the KVBO.
Tracking the Long Journey
Kalamazoo Nature Center • 7000 North Westnedge Avenue • Kalamazoo, MI 49009
PHONE (269) 381-1574 • FAX (269) 381-2557