A Focus On Nature

Breeding Birds Workshop


This day is going to be all about transects, mapping and territories, so the Workshop will take place over two half days.  The first half will comprise an afternoon walk around the site, going through the methodology, exploring the habitats and assessing the site.  You’ll look at routes and discuss what to look and listen for in the morning.  The next morning will involve meeting pre-dawn and surveying the site for breeding birds in the gloom/darkness.

Bird Brain UK Limited:

Bird Brain UK Limited is a one stop shop for all your ornithological requirements: they provide site surveys, whether it is an assessment for planning permission or a bench mark survey for site. David Darrell-Lambert has kindly offered his services to lead two surveys this year for AFON members – one on Breeding Birds this spring and one for wintering birds later in the year. Attendees will find that he is able to give a unique and invaluable insight into a career in ornithological surveying, as well as valuable skills in birding and identification.


Date: Saturday 26th April 2014 & Sunday 27th April 2014

Venue: University of Reading (Meeting Place TBC)

Time: Saturday afternoon & Sunday morning (early start – TBC)

Food & Refreshments: Not included in cost of ticket

Ages: A Focus On Nature is officially for ages 16 to 30, although younger teens are welcome, too, so long as they are accompanied by a responsible adult. There will be about 20 places in total, a certain number of which will be reserved for students at the University of Reading.



14:00 – David will be hosting an introductory session, including a look at we should survey birds and how we do it, the legalities behind surveying and a bit of history, the methodology of surveying and a bit about identification.

16:00 – You’ll be off for a site visit to explore the area and get to grips with what you’ll be looking for the next day

17:00 – Finish


04:30 – You’ll be meeting on site bright and early (!), with the view to start surveying at 04:45.

06:45 – Finish surveying the area, followed by a review and Q&A session, and feedback.

08:00 – Finish


The cost of the Workshop is free, but you will be responsible for your own food, accommodation and transport.


• To learn about the professional ecological surveying as a potential career path
• To learn about different ways of interacting with birds
• To learn about the importance of scientific integrity in wider nature conservation
• To meet and network with other young birders and conservationists
• To get hands-on experience of Breeding Birds Surveys


Accommodation is not provided with the event, although there is plenty of local accommodation in the area. Reading is also accessible by an excellent train line to the City and bus service to the University.


For a booking form, please email rebecca.thomas@reading.ac.uk. We are limited in the amount of space we have, so please book early!