Welcome to Ornithology AEC 501

Our goal for this course is to build a foundation of knowledge that will inspire you to keep learning about birds for the rest of your life. Our approach will focus primarily on the behavior and ecology of birds, and the development of field skills.

Sightings - Extra Credit

Earn extra credit by adding species to the class list or answering the "Question of the Week."

Field Labs

Friday morning labs will focus on developing identification skills and understanding modern bird sampling methods.

Coastal Field Trip

We will visit the Outer Banks the weekend of January 22 - 23. Expect to see over 100 species on Pea, Bodie, Hatteras, and Ocracoke Islands, and Mattamuskeet National Wildlife Refuge.


Course Instructors and Teaching Assistant



Course News

News & Notes for Ornithology AEC 501 Spring 2022

28-Jan Lab

Meet at the vans at 08:00 (MAP). Bring binos, field notebook, (ID book/app if you have one), and plan to be outside for 2+ hrs. We will travel by vans but students can also drive personal vehicles if preferred. If driving separately meet at the vans at 08:00 or at the back corner of Centennial Campus Middle School parking lot at 08:05.

Project proposal and site descriptions due 11-Feb

Raleigh 2021 Christmas Bird Count Summary

21-Jan Lab Cancelled due to weather

Coastal Trip is postponed due to weather

We will look to reschedule for a weekend in February.

Get started with Waterfowl Identification

Peent! That time of year..... Thanks to Hannah O'Carroll - class of 2020

Latest news from the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology

Friday's lab is in 282 David Clark Labs at 8:00

The lab will not be recorded on Panopto, but a Zoom link was emailed for those that cannot attend in person.

2022 Theme Song

Lecture recordings

Recordings of all Monday and Wednesday lectures will be available via Panopto. The class folder is HERE.

2021 Raleigh Christmas Bird Count

Join us on Saturday, 18 December 2021 on our Raleigh CHRISTMAS BIRD COUNT route in Umstead State Park. No experience necessary. This is the 122nd year of the national count, and the 28th year we have run our Umstead route. It is always a fun experience. We'll meet up around 6:30 AM and wander around Umstead counting birds until about 1 PM. If you are interested in joining us, please contact Dr. Simons for more details.

Stocking Stuffer for Aspiring Birders


Materials for Sampling Lab on Friday 14 January

We will meet in 282 David Clark from 08:00 - 11:00 on Friday 14 January to discuss avian sampling. Links to materials are provided below. Bring a laptop to lab and install the software R Studio and verify correct installation via this PowerPoint Example before class. We'll give an introduction to OCCUPANCY SAMPLING and work through an analysis using SAMPLE DATA for Blue Grosbeak. We will also discuss DOUBLE OBSERVER sampling, and describe the field lab on double observer sampling that we'll conduct at Lake Raleigh on Friday 21 January.

Welcome to Ornithology 2022

The first day of class is Monday 10 January 2022. We meet in Room 306 Fox from 8:30 - 9:45 AM. The text for this class is Ornithology, Third Edition, by Frank Gill. You will also need a pair of binoculars and a waterproof field notebook. Please review the current NCSU HEALTH AND SAFETY POLICIES regarding COVID-19. The Coastal Trip is scheduled for Saturday and Sunday 22 - 23 January. We will leave campus at 6:00 AM on Saturday and return at 11 PM on Sunday. Contact Dr. Simons if you have questions.