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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.


Fall 2018 GGAS Classes 

 

Registration for August classes has opened.

Registration for the remainder of Fall classes will open Wednesday, August 8, 2018

 

Ear Birding in the Field with Nathan Pieplow

 

THIS CLASS IS FULL: Click here to be added to the waitlist

Friday, Aug 17                                                         

Oakland East Bay Hills

Nathan Pieplow is the author of the recently published Peterson Field Guide to Bird Sounds of Eastern North America and the forthcoming guide for Western North America. Put the listening and sonogram reading skills Nathan will present in his GGAS Speaker Series talk on Thursday evening Aug 16 into practice in the field!

Although late summer is a less intense time for bird songs and vocalizations, there will be plenty of sounds to study in the field.

  • One four hour field trip with on-location instruction, Friday Aug 17, 8:00 am to 12 noon.
  • Instructor: Nathan Pieplow
  • Limited to 16 participants
  • $40 for GGAS members, $50 for non-members
  • Oakland East Bay Hills. Final location details will be provided to participants.
  • The registration link will go live on July 12 at 10:00 am. Once the class is full, you may register to be on a waiting list.

Click here to register be added to the waitlist

Fall Migrations: Shorebirds of California FULL

 

THIS CLASS IS FULL: Click here to be added to the waitlist

Aug 23 through Sept 16                                                   

Fort Mason, SF

Fall Migration is fantastic in the SF Bay Area and shorebirding in particular is world class. By late August, hundreds of thousands of “wind birds” have winged their way from their northern breeding grounds to the globally significant San Francisco Bay – a key portion of the Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network.

In three 2 hour classroom sessions we will focus on the amazing evolutionary adaptations, life histories and identification techniques of the 30 plus species of shorebirds that reside, pass through in migration or overwinter in California. On three Sunday field trips we’ll have opportunities to view and focus on this order but not at all ignore the myriad of other fall migrants and resident birds that we will encounter. Inclement weather will postpone field trips.

(There’s a break after the first class and field trip due to Labor Day, but participants are encourage to participate in World Shorebird Day that weekend.)

  • Three Thursday evening classes, Aug 23, Sept 6, 13 – 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
  • Three three-hour Sunday field trips, Aug 26, Sept 9, 16.
  • Instructor: Eddie Bartley, eddie@naturetrip.com
  • Limited to 24 participants
  • $75 for GGAS members, $100 for non-members
  • Location: Fort Mason in S.F., Landmark Building C, Room C210. Parking, for a fee, on site.
  • Once the class is full, you may register to be on a waiting list.

Click here to be added to the waitlist

Carpooling will be encouraged.

Please contact the instructor for additional information: eddie@naturetrip.com

 

Registration for these classes will open on August 8th.

Raptors in a Day FULL

THIS CLASS IS FULL. CLICK HERE TO BE ADDED TO THE WAITLIST

Sunday, September 23 

Marin Headlands

Don’t have time to take a multiple week class?  Then come to this one day class to learn the basics of raptor identification and experience the area’s fall migration of hawks, falcons, eagles, and vultures.

This one-day 6-hour class will include a 2 hour class presentation the Marin Headlands and then a trip to Hawk Hill to view and put into practice the ID skills learned in the classroom. The lecture will  focus on the basics so birders of all skill levels are welcomed.   We also have the option of listening to the Golden Gate Raptor Observatory hawk talk and banding demo that will be taking place on the hill.  The classroom session will take place regardless of weather; however, if Hawk Hill is fogged out, we may be able to find another spot in the Headlands or re-schedule the field portion.  One weekend class and field trip, Sept 23  – 8:30 to 2:30 p.m.

  • Instructor: Anne Ardillo
  • Each class limited to 20 participants (please sign up for only one!)
  • $40 for GGAS members, $50 for non-members
  • Location: Marin Headlands ( Detailed directions will be provided to participants.)
  • The registration link will go live on Aug. 8 at 9:00 a.m. Once the class is full, you may register to be on a waiting list.

Click HERE to be added to the watlist for September 23 class

Raptors in a Day

Saturday, October 13 

Marin Headlands

Don’t have time to take a multiple week class?  Then come to this one day class to learn the basics of raptor identification and experience the area’s fall migration of hawks, falcons, eagles, and vultures.

This one-day 6-hour class will include a 2 hour class presentation the Marin Headlands and then a trip to Hawk Hill to view and put into practice the ID skills learned in the classroom. The lecture will  focus on the basics so birders of all skill levels are welcomed.   We also have the option of listening to the Golden Gate Raptor Observatory hawk talk and banding demo that will be taking place on the hill.  The classroom session will take place regardless of weather; however, if Hawk Hill is fogged out, we may be able to find another spot in the Headlands or re-schedule the field portion.  One weekend class with field trip, Oct. 13  – 8:30 to 2:30 p.m.

  • Instructor: Anne Ardillo
  • Each class limited to 20 participants (please sign up for only one!)
  • $40 for GGAS members, $50 for non-members
  • Location: Marin Headlands ( Detailed directions will be provided to participants.)
  • The registration link will go live on Aug. 8 at 9:00 a.m. Once the class is full, you may register to be on a waiting list.

Click HERE to register for October 13 class

GGAS Classes coming later this Fall 2018

all at the Ed Roberts Campus, Berkeley 

Birding by Ear FULL

This class is FULL. You may register to be on the waitlist.

Sept 27 through Nov 3   

Fall is a less vocal time of year for birds, providing a good opportunity to study the various sounds of our common Bay Area breeding species, as well as the sounds of returning wintering birds.  We will be focusing on the birds we hope to hear during our field trips, then review the sounds we actually heard. One evening class will cover basic tips and hints for birding by ear, and one other evening class will be an introduction to using spectrograms (often called sonograms) as a way to visualize bird sounds.  Students are encouraged to record local bird sounds and bring them to class for identification and discussion. The field classes will cover a wide variety of habitats.  Field trip locations can be found on the instructor’s website.

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

  • Six Thursday evening classes, Sept 27 to Nov 2 − 7 to 8:30 p.m.
  • Six three-hour field trips on the Saturday following each class, 8:30 – 11:30 a.m.
  • Instructor: Denise Wight
  • Limit to 20 participants
  • $120 for GGAS members, $140 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.

The registration link will go live on Aug. 8 at 9:30 a.m. Once the class is full, you may register to be on a waiting list.

Click HERE to register to be on the waitlist

 

Birds of the Bay Area

Oct 2 through Nov 11  

Migration will bring departures, arrivals, and stop-overs for feeding and rest. The shorebirds and ducks will have returned!  Hawks will be in the air! Geese and cranes will be in the Central Valley!  Join an enthusiastic group of birders to experience birding locations in our area while learning about bird ID, feeding, molting, behavior, and a variety of other bird-related topics.

Field trip locations will be posted on the class website, http://www.wingbeats.org/.

  • Six Tuesday evening classes, Oct 2, 9, 16, 23, 30, Nov 6 − 7 to 8:30 p.m.
  • Five three-hour field trips on the Saturday or Sunday (your choice) following each class plus one weekend field trip Nov 10 – 11.
  • Instructors: Bob Lewis and Maureen Lahiff
  • Limited to 40 participants
  • $130 for GGAS members, $150 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.The registration link will go live on Aug. 8 at 10:00 a.m. Once the class is full, you may register to be on a waiting list.

    Click HERE to register.

Beginning Birdwatching

Oct 15 through Nov 17                             

Learn about birds that spend fall and winter with us. This great introduction to bird-watching will teach you about the migrants and seasonal visitors, as well as year-round residents. Instructor Anne Hoff will familiarize you with the tools of the trade − binoculars, field guides, and the best local places to watch birds.  In Monday evening classroom sessions, she’ll introduce you to birds and their habitats. Then on the following Saturday, she’ll help you spot them in the field! No prior birding experience required. Note: You will need to own a pair of binoculars or borrow them from a friend for this class, but they are not necessary until the first field trip.

  • Five Monday evening classes, Oct 15, 22, 29; Nov 5, 12 – 7 to 8:30 p.m.
  • Five Saturday morning field trips, 9 to 11:30 a.m. on the weekend after each class.
  • Instructor: Anne Hoff
  • Limited to 16 participants
  • $100 for GGAS members, $120 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.The registration link will go live on Aug. 8 at 10:30 a.m. Once the class is full, you may register to be on a waiting list.Click HERE to register.

 

Advanced Beginning Birdwatching

Oct 17 through Nov 18 

The Advanced Beginning class is geared to people who have already taken our Beginning Birdwatching class, OR who have birded once a month (on average) for at least a year. Participants must have and use binoculars confidently. Field trips will be to woodland, wetland, and shore locations.  This class will help you with some of the  more challenging IDs and further develop your skills using resources and references. In addition, conservation issues and citizen science programs to address them will be presented.

  • Five Wednesday evening classes, Oct 17, 24, 31, Nov 7, 14 − 7 to 8:30 p.m.
  • Five three-hour field trips on the Sunday following each class, 9 a.m. to noon
  • Instructor: Anne Hoff
  • Limited to 16 participants
  • $100 for GGAS members, $120 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.The registration link will go live on Aug. 8 at 11:00 a.m. Once the class is full, you may register to be on a waiting list.Click HERE to register.

 

Waterbirds of Central California

Oct 17 to Nov 10                                 

Our four week focus will be shorebirds and water birds (though we certainly won’t ignore land birds). We will discuss identification and natural history of these birds; their foraging strategies, their amazing migrations. The first 3 field trips will be local, on Saturday mornings. Our final field trip will a weekend overnight trip to the Sacramento Delta and Central Valley. Beginning birders are very welcome.

  • Four Wednesday evening classes, Oct 17, 24, 31; Nov 1 – 7 to 8:30 p.m.
  • Three three-hour Saturday field trips on Oct 20, 27, Nov 3, plus one weekend field trip Nov 10 – 11.
  • Instructor: Rusty Scalf
  • 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. Free parking in the lot behind the center.The registration link will go live on Aug. 8 at 11:30 a.m. Once the class is full, you may register to be on a waiting list.Click HERE to register.

Avian Treasure Hunt: Fall Migration

Oct 18 to Nov 3                                            

Prepare for the migrant treasure hunt and sharpen your birding skills by better understanding local bird distribution patterns in time and space. We’ll review how seasonal changes in various Bay Area habitats influence the birds you’ll expect to find in the field. You’ll get practical birding tips on what to look for throughout the seasons when “hunting” for migratory birds with an emphasis on bird  behavior, birdsong and bird calls. At the end of this course you’ll be better prepared to find local migrant and vagrant birds with confidence. Moreover, the principles you’ll learn regarding bird distribution in relation to seasonal changes and habitats apply to any place you may explore around the world.

  • Three Thursday evening classes, Oct 18 to Nov 1 − 7 to 8:30 p.m.
  • Three six-hour field trips on the Saturday following each class, 8:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
  • Instructor: Juan-Carlos Solis
  • Limit to 20 participants
  • $100 for GGAS members, $120 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.

The registration link will go live on Aug. 8 at noon. Once the class is full, you may register to be on a waiting list.

Click HERE to register.

 

You might also enjoy these non-GGAS classes

with Joe Morlan:

City College of San Francisco

Joe Morlan

Topics in Field Ornithology – Part A (EA110) meets on Wednesdays
September 5 through October 17 (no class September 26).

Topics in Field Ornithology – Part B (EA115) meets on Wednesdays
November 7 through December 12.

More details can be found here.

 

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.