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Classes

Improve your birding skills — or get started in birdwatching with some friendly, expert help! Golden Gate Audubon offers classes for all levels of birding experience. Please register for our classes online (easy and fast). If you don’t have access to a computer, call our office at (510) 843-2222 and we will return your call as soon as possible.

CANCELLATION POLICY: As a small organization with limited office staff, it is challenging for us to handle last-minute cancellations. If you need to cancel, we will refund your registration fee if :

(1) You withdraw more than two weeks before the start of the class, AND
(2) We can fill your spot with someone from the class waiting list.

Please note that there will be a $5 cancellation fee to cover the credit card transaction costs for your sign-up and cancellation.


Migrant Treasure Hunt: Spring Migration

May 9 to May 26

Sharpen your birding skills this spring by better understanding bird behavior and migrant bird ecology and distribution patterns in time and space. Through this three-week class, you’ll get practical birding tips on what to look for when “hunting” for migratory birds and vagrants, with a strong emphasis on birdsong, bird calls and bird behavior. At the end of this course you’ll be better prepared to find local migrant and vagrant birds with confidence.

  • Three Wednesday evening classes, May 9, 16, and 23; 7 to 8:30 p.m.
  • Three six-hour Saturday field trips, May 12, 19, and 26
  • Instructor:  Juan-Carlos Solis, www.QuetzalAdventures.com
  • Limited to 20 participants
  • $90 for GGAS members, $110 for non-members
  • Location: Ed Roberts Campus, 3075 Adeline Street, directly across the street from Ashby BART in Berkeley. Korea Boardroom. Free parking in the lot behind the center.
  • Click here to register. Once the class is full, you may register to be on a waiting list.

 

Beginning Birdwatching – Late Spring

April 11 to May 12 FULL

This great introduction to bird-watching will teach you about the migrants and seasonal visitors, as well as year-round residents. Instructor Clay Anderson will familiarize you with the tools of the trade — binoculars, field guides, scopes, and the best local places to watch birds.  In Wednesday evening classroom sessions, he’ll introduce you to different kinds of birds. Then on the following Sunday, he’ll help you spot them in the field! No prior birding experience required. Note: You will need to own or borrow binoculars for this class, but they are not necessary until the first field trip.

  • Five Wednesday evening classes, April 9 to May 9, 7 to 8:30 pm
  • Five Sunday morning field trips, 8:30 to 11 am on the weekend after each class
  • Instructor: Clay Anderson
  • Limited to 16 participants
  • $90 for GGAS members, $110 for non-members
  • Location: Ed Roberts Campus, 3075 Adeline Street, directly across the street from Ashby BART in Berkeley. Free parking in the lot behind the center.
  • Please click here to register.  Once the class is full, you may register to be on a waiting list.

 

Evolution of Birds

April 10 to May 15

This class focuses on avian evolution – including the scientists whose work has led to the modern theory of evolution, the evolutionary processes that have resulted in over 10,000 species of birds today, and the geological events that have been much of the cause of today’s avian multitude.  From dinosaurs in Pangea to mountains rising in California, we’ll cover 100 million years of the earth’s history, ending with California’s remarkable birdlife – all in six weeks.  This is an advanced class.  Lectures will be provided ahead of time via Dropbox to those interested.

  • Six Tuesday evening classes, April 10, 17, and 24, May 1, 8, 15;  7 to 8:30 pm
  • Two weekend field trips, in smaller groups ,to be arranged, sometime during the course.
  • Instructors: Bob Lewis and Bruce Mast
  • Limited to 60 participants
  • $110 for GGAS members, $130 for non-members
  • Location: Ed Roberts Campus, 3075 Adeline Street, directly across the street from Ashby BART in Berkeley. Free parking in the lot behind the center.
  • Please click here to register. Once the class is full, you may register to be on a waiting list.

 

Birding by Ear – Late Spring

April 26 to June 2 FULL

Oh my, song is in full force. From the morning chorus to the evening roosting, birds are singing, reinforcing pair bonds, defending territories, and just keeping track of one another. It’s a wonderful time to be in the field and improve your birdsong knowledge. Join Denise in class and in the field.

Field trip locations can be found on the instructor’s website, http://www.denisewightbirds.com/.

  • Six Thursday evening classes, April 26 to May 31; 7 to 8:30 pm
  • Six three-hour field trips on the Saturday following each class, 8:30 to 11:30 am
  • Instructor: Denise Wight
  • Limited to 20 participants
  • $110 for GGAS members, $130 for non-members
  • Location: Ed Roberts Campus, 3075 Adeline Street, directly across the street from Ashby BART in Berkeley. Free parking in the lot behind the center.
  • Please click here to register. Once the class is full, you may register to be on a waiting list.

 

Bird Notes FULL

May 10 to June 3

Learning bird calls and songs, while a lifelong pursuit, can be very rewarding right from the start! This class is designed for beginning to intermediate level birders and those that know many birds by sight but want to further hone their auditory ID skills. Spring is an excellent time to hear bird vocalizations and by May we will hear territorial songs and also calls from young birds.

In three 2 hour classroom sessions we will study avian anatomical sound mechanisms, consider ways to differentiate the similar sounds of bird families and the language of individual species. Three field sessions to a variety of common local habitat types will bring those concepts into play.

While resident and breeding birds will be the focal species we will also study and discuss any natural sounds that we come across and learn how to narrow bird sounds down to individual families and species. Digital bird sounds and online resource links will be provided.

Carpooling and Ride Share will be encouraged. Contact instructor for additional information: eddie@naturetrip.com

  • Three Thursday evening classes May 10, May 17 and May 24; 6:30 to 8:30 pm
  • Three field trips, 8 to 11 am on Sundays May 13, May 20 and June 3
  • Instructor: Eddie Bartley
  • Limited to 20 participants
  • $100 for GGAS members, $120 for non-members
  • Location: Fort Mason in San Francisco, Landmark Building C, Room C230; fee-based parking on site
  • Click here to register. Once the class is full, you may register to be on a waiting list.

 

SUMMER CLASSES IN THE SIERRA

Birds of the Sierra, Sessions 1 and 2

Two sessions of the popular class “Birds of the Sierra” will be offered again this year. Both will be held at and near Yuba Pass, between Sierra City and Sierraville. Classes include six half-day field trips to different habitats in Sierra Valley and its surroundings, as well as a lecture and dinner at SFSU’s Sierra Nevada Field Campus in Bassetts.

Birds we may see include many Sierra specialties: Swainson’s Hawk, Sandhill Crane, White-headed and Lewis’s Woodpecker, Williamson’s Sapsucker, Calliope Hummingbird, Empidonax flycatchers, Mountain Chickadee, Mountain Bluebird, Sage Thrasher, MacGillivray’s and Hermit Warbler, Western Tanager, Green-tailed Towhee and Brewer’s and Vesper Sparrow.

  • Birds of the Sierra I, taught by Rusty Scalf and Bob Lewis, meets from 3 p.m. Thursday June 7th to noon on Sunday June 10th.
  • Birds of the Sierra II, taught by Eddie Bartley and Bob Lewis, meets from 3 p.m. Thursday June 14th to noon on Sunday June 17th.

Each class is limited to 25 people. The fee of $165 (or $185 for non-GGAS members) includes one dinner. Room and other meals are not included in the fee. Bob Lewis will send a more detailed itinerary and information about where to look for lodging after registration. Questions? Email Bob Lewis at bob@wingbeats.org.

Click here to register for Birds of the Sierra, Session 1

Click here to register for Birds of the Sierra, Session 2

Once the class is full, you may register to be on a waiting list.

 

 

What’s even more fun than taking one of our birding classes?

Taking it with a friend! Invite a birding buddy to register with you.