E-badge criteria: Effective bird identification

Ambios Ltd Effective Bird Identification course

The panels below describe the range of experiences and activities with which the e-badge holder has engaged over the 8-weeks of the  Ambios Ltd Effective Bird Identification course.




An 8-week course

The holder of this e-badge can:

  • Describe, in order of priority, the five features to observe when identifying bird
  • Sketch the key features of a bird collected by direct observation in the wild
  • Describe the key differences between 5 of the European bird families
  • Understand the role of Shape when identifying birds
  • Describe the Stance and Proportions of a bird
  • Describe the different beak shapes of birds and how they relate to identification
  • Describe the different leg shapes of birds and how they relate to identification
  • Describe the shapes of birds in flight.
  • Describe the role of size when describing birds
  • Describe the importance of song in bird identification
  • Describe the the role of colours and marking, behaviour, time of year and geographic location and habitat when identifying birds in the field

Field notes

A key output from the course were weekly field notes and sketches illustrating a range of bird species chosen and encountered by the e-badge holder.

This weekly field-based exercise allowed participants to practice their sketching skills, making their own personal journey in this regard, in the context of focusing on the information needed to later identify the bird. In the final week participants shared their first and last field sketches to compare and contrast and illustrate their personal learning journeys.

Using a Field Guide

During their time on the course the e-badge holder became familiar with the Collins Field Guide as a key tool to support identification of birds observed in the field.

A combination of producing field notes and sketches, referring the bird guide and checking understanding by engaging with quizzes with the virtual learning environment and build the participants bird identification skills.  They are now at a point where they have the tool kit to grow and enhance their ability to identify wild birds in different locations.