Banish winter blues with spring birds

The annual Spring Field Ornithology course will be March 21 – May 13

“It’s a great way to soak in the beauty of the Finger Lakes region and welcome back migrating songbirds,” says course instructor Steve Kress. “Participants learn to identify birds by sight and song and visit the best birding spots in the Cayuga Lake Basin.” Kress is vice president for Bird Conservation for Audubon and has taught the Spring Field Ornithology course for 35 years.

Two sections are offered, with students grouped with others of the same skill level on field trips.

Wednesday evening lectures cover bird songs, nesting, courtship, migration, and habitat. Also included: two trips to the Cornell University Museum of Vertebrates and a night owl-watch. Lectures are timed to match the spring migration and focus on species students will see during guided Saturday or Sunday field trips to regional birding hotspots. Participants may sign up for lectures only, field trips only, or both sections. There are also two optional overnight trips­ — one to Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge and the other to Cape May, NJ, to experience peak spring migration.

Cost of the course: $160 for lectures, $195 for the weekend field trips, or $340 for both. Additional fees apply for the optional overnight trips. Registrations for the weekly field trips received by Feb. 1 will receive a $10 discount. Cornell Lab of Ornithology members receive additional discounts.

The course is offered by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, with support from Wild Birds Unlimited and The Plantsmen Nursery.

Find out more about the course schedule, watch a video about the course, and sign up at www.birds.cornell.edu/sfo, or contact Erica Marx, 607-254-2466 or email sfoclass@cornell.edu or call 800-843-2473, toll-free.