Centre for Alternative Technology

Course Search


Bird Identification

  • Bird identification - NuthatchBird identification - Nuthatch

    Fri 27th - Sun 29th April 2018.
    Course starts at 10am.
    Please book onto the course through Aberystwyth University 01970 621 580 before booking accommodation at CAT.
    Full board accommodation at CAT £118.

  • Dates, Times & Fees

Course details

Birds have the ability of capturing our imaginations. Whether it’s feeding the birds in the garden or enjoying them while on a walk, as a nation we are obsessed with them. More and more people are taking up bird watching as a hobby; however, many people struggle to get to grips with some of the more challenging species.

The course aims to build up the confidence of students to have a better understanding of ornithology and be able to work out what the birds are that you are looking at.

The course will be field based with indoor sessions used to consolidate and reinforce field techniques. Most field work will be undertaken in the area directly surrounding CAT where we will look, primarily, at song birds and the habitats that they require. The field work will concentrate on becoming familiar with commonplace birds and then comparing them with other more challenging species. The fieldwork will look at distinct habitats to see what guilds of birds are typical to these areas.

No prior knowledge is required to tackle the course. Whether you are a complete beginner or have previous experience you will enjoy acquiring identification skills and knowledge with the help and expertise of the tutor. You will be encouraged to ask questions and share ideas, to learn not only from the tutor but also from other members of the group.

The course is fully accredited by Aberystwyth University giving you the opportunity to study at Higher Education level 1, giving 10 credits which are excellent for professional development.

Assessment work is embedded in the course and consists of keeping a ‘portfolio’ as a running record of the species seen in different habitats and situations with descriptions of key identification points. This will act as a useful reference document. During the fieldwork you should keep notes in a field notebook, this will be part of your assessment and will be returned to you shortly after marking to help you complete the portfolio. You will also complete a short identification and terminology test.

A ring bound notebook for the ‘portfolio’ and a field notebook are included in the course fee. Reference books and hand outs are provided but you must bring your own optical equipment and outdoor clothing.

More information on Aberystwyth School of Lifelong Learning

The University of Aberystwyth School of Education and Lifelong Learning aims to offer a range of accredited (intensive) courses at CAT to enable students to gain a Higher Education Certificate in Field Ecology.

The Certificates would take a minimum of two to three years to complete. Gaining the Certificate would enable you to become a competent field ecologist, able to plan and undertake field survey work and identify key species. These are useful skills that are in high demand for many environmental and conservation jobs.

The core courses of this Certificate cover general ecology, the diversity of plants and animals and plant identification.
There are also many key and optional courses to choose from involving the identification, habitat and general ecology of a range of groups: invertebrates, mammals, bats, mosses, lichens, grasses, flowering plants, birds, pond life and many more.

Individual courses can be built up in to the Certificate of Field Ecology.

If you are interested in working towards this Certificate, more information, help or advice is available from the School of Education and Lifelong Learning Aberystwyth University, telephone Paula Hughes 01970 62 2682 (mornings only) .

You do not need a scientific background to succeed.

For more information on taking this course as part of a field certificate through Aberystwyth School of Lifelong Learning Click here
(opens new web page)


Start Date

Book Now!

Email courses@cat.org.uk
or phone 01654 704 966

Please book onto the course through Aberystwyth University 01970 621 580 before booking your full board accommodation at CAT.

Subscribe to our newsletter


Click here to sign up