How to Study a Specific Bird Species

Do you really like a bird, its song, or just everything about it? A great way to learn about it is to study that specific species.


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    Learn the basic information. This is one of the easiest ways to learn about the species. You can look it up in a field guide and find the basics. This might tell the color of the bird, song interpretation, range, and appearance.
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    Observe! Another easy way to learn is to observe the bird in nature. When it is at your bird feeders pay attention to its behavior. Does it push seeds off the side of the feeder? Does it crack large seeds open with its beak? Behavior is a big part of your research.
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    Look for nests after breeding season. Try to find a bird nest that this species of bird built. Be sure to do this after their breeding season, though, so that you do not disturb the bird. Take notes on what shape it is, what it's made out of, and where it is. If the nest is in a bird box, measure how big the hole is and how big the box is, and also see how high it is from the ground.
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    Go online and to the library. The internet is a great place to learn. Be careful, though, as some information you find online may not be all true. The library is an excellent place to learn, also. Look up books about the species and read them. You will probably find some interesting facts. You should have specific questions you would like to have answered before going online or to the library.
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    Ask the experts. Try to find experts on birds in your local community. The experts will probably know information that you won't find in books. Your local Audubon Society may be a great place to look for experts and extra information.
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    Keep learning. Once you have learned a lot of information, try to keep finding more. There is always more you can learn about something. Try to stay interested on the topic. If you want to finish with your research, though, try studying another species!


  • Don't depend only on color if you try to identify a bird of the species. Birds have different plumage during different times of the year.
  • Although field guides have interpretations and information on bird songs, many times it is not accurate. To really learn the bird's song and call, try to hear it yourself.
  • When looking up a bird in libraries and online, use the scientific name as well as its common name.
  • Find different field guides. Different ones may have different and possibly more information.
  • Don't get discouraged. You can do it! Just keep trying, and never give up. There will always be information out there that you can find and learn.
  • If you want to attract more of the species to your property, add more of the features that attract them to it.

Things You'll Need

  • A person eager to learn
  • Specific species to study
  • Field guide (at least one)
  • Place to observe the birds
  • Books
  • Internet access

Article Info

Categories: Birdwatching | Biology