Peru: Bat Ringing Forever

A volunteer for Bird Ringing Forever decided to give us all a crash course in BAT ringing during one of the final nights BRF was at the Explorer's Inn. It was pretty exciting. Though, not the FIRST time I held a bat. HA. :) It was absolutely amazing, nonetheless.

Peru: Bird Ringing Forever

During my first week or so at the Explorer's Inn, in Peru, I spent most of my time learning from and documenting the volunteers and researchers of Bird Ringing Forever. As stated on their website, "Bird Ringing Forever is a not-for-profit course (workshop) that is managed by two Peruvian-based research and conservation groups, Fauna Forever (est. 1996) and the Center for Ornithology and Biodiversity (CORBIDI, est. 2006) and with the support of the North American Banding Council (NABC). The course was established to help train the next generation of Neotropical bird specialists in mist-netting, bird ringing, bird handling and bird identification skills." It was an amazing opportunity to see so many beautiful neotropical birds up close. If you are interested in bird ringing (or bird banding, as we US Citizens call it), check out the website!

First, the tools of a bird ringer:

Setting up the mist-nets. Mist-nets are used to catch the birds. They get trapped and then must be extracted. Usually they are not harmed.

Extracting birds from a mist-net:

Sometimes other things get caught...

Back at the base, where they do the ringing and take all the measurements:

Extracted birds waiting to be ringed:

Taking a leg measurement to fit the correct ring:

Getting the correct sized ring:

Ringing the birds:

After the bird is ringed, they identify it and take many different measurements:

Recording all the data:

And then they hold the bird up for a short photo shoot. Though this is good for recording collected species, it's also just fun taking photos of some awesome birds:

Jarred, the bird tamer, trying to get the bird in photo mode:

Sometimes the birds get a little angry:

Then, you open your hand and set them freeeeee:

Though Bird Ringing Forever is all about data collection, the vollunteers learn more than they probably ever expected:

aaannnnnnndddddddd I got to hold my first bird, a band-tailed manakin!