Bird-watching Badge

(Discover the Outdoors)

by Charlotte Duke, Troop 109


You may use any higher-level requirement as an optional requirement if appropriate.


Penguin: Do three requirements including the two starred *

_____1.* Learn what bird-watching is. Be able to identify three different species of birds.

_____2.* For a week make a list of the birds you see in your yard. What are the most common?


Otter: Do four requirements including the two starred *

_____1.* Do Penguin requirements 1 & 2. Be able to identify five different species of birds.

_____2.* Birds "communicate" by songs and calls. Learn to identify three different birds by their songs or calls.


Dolphin: Do five requirements including the two starred *

_____1.* Do Otter requirements 1 & 2. Be able to identify seven different species of birds.

_____2.* Learn how to use a bird identification book. Understand what migration, range, in the wild, endangered and habitat mean. In the book, find five birds that you see in your area.


Butterfly: Do six requirements including the two starred *

_____1.* Do Dolphin requirements 1 & 2. Be able to identify nine different species of birds.

_____2.*How does a bird fly? What part do the tail, wings and head play in how it flies? Learn about the skeletal structure of birds. How is this different from animals? Observe different kinds of birds in flight. How do they differ in how they fly? Why do you think this is?


Eagle: Do seven requirements including the two starred *

_____1.* Do Butterfly requirements 1 & 2. Be able to identify twelve different species of birds.

_____2.* Go bird-watching for a day, either at a local park, national park, forest, sanctuary, or anywhere else where you can spot different types of birds. Find and identify at least ten types of birds in their natural habitat.


Owl: Do nine requirements including the two starred *

_____1.* Do Eagle requirements 1 & 2. Be able to identify fifteen different species of birds.

_____2.* Teach someone how to do a skill from this badge or teach some knowledge about this badge to someone. You can teach kids, your spouse, seniors, anyone, just as long as you are sharing your new found knowledge. If for some reason you cannot teach what you have learned to someone else, you may choose an additional 2 optional requirements instead.


Optional requirements:

_____3. On a diagram of a bird, identify at least ten different parts. Examples include: auriculars, back, belly, bill, breast, crown, ear patch, eyebrow, eye line, eye-ring, flank, greater upperwing coverts, lore, malar, mandible, mantle, maxilla, median upperwing coverts, nape, primaries, rump, scapulars, secondaries, side, submalar mark, supercilium, tail feathers, tarsus, tertials, throat, toes, undertail coverts, uppertail coverts and vent.

_____4. What is your state bird? What is the national bird of the United States? Have you ever seen either of them? Where?

_____5. Talk to someone who lives in a different state. What species of birds do they see? What is their state bird?

_____6. What sort of equipment do bird-watchers use when bird-watching? Examples might include, binoculars, pen and paper, a tape recorder, indexes, etc.

_____7. Visit a zoo or aviary and look at the exotic birds. Where are they from? How do they differ from the birds you usually see in your yard?

_____8. Research different bird families, such as raptors, thrushes, flycatchers, woodpeckers and sapsuckers, waterbirds, etc. How are they different?

_____9. What types of careers involve birds? How much bird-watching is involved? What sort of education would you need, and where might you expect to work?

_____10. Identify different locations where bird-watching is popular, such as the Florida Everglades or Slimbridge in the U.K. What sorts of birds live there?

_____11. Go on a guided bird-watching tour. Make a log of the birds you see.

_____12. Watch a documentary on bird-watching.

_____13. Create something to attract birds to your yard, such as a bird feeder or a bird house. Observe for one week what types of birds come to it.

_____14. Earn the Birds badge at your level.

_____15. Participate in a community service project related to birds, such as helping to clean up a pond or wetland, or volunteering at your local zoo.

_____16. Research which plants can attract specific species of birds to your backyard. If possible, plant some to encourage the birds to visit.

_____17. Learn what "memory phrases" are. Read the book Bird Talk by Ann Jonas. Learn to identify at least three birds by their memory phrases.

_____18. Be able to identify male, female and juvenile birds of at least five different species.

_____19. Choose a part of a bird, such as feet or beak, and research how it differs between species. Why is this? How does what the birds eat affect what sort of beak they have?

_____20. Choose your favorite bird and make a poster or brochure about it. Be sure to include the following information:

  • How many eggs does it lay?
  • Does it mate for life?
  • What is the population of this bird?
  • What does it eat?
  • Where does it live/what is its range?
  • What sort of nest does it make?
  • Does it need to live in large groups?
  • Does it migrate? Where from and where to?

_____21. Choose a bird that is at risk of being endangered, or is endangered. Make a poster, brochure or fliers encouraging others to save this species of bird. Include any necessary information and helpful advice.



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