Lecture Syllabus

The syllabus provides a summary of lecture topics, lab activities, assigned readings and assignment due dates. Friday morning lab topics, meeting locations, and field trip times and locations are included. The syllabus is subject to revision during the semester. Check the course web page for updates as well as announcements and details about labs and field trips. Recordings of all Monday and Wednesday lectures will be available via a Panopto folder HERE. Larger pdf files from lectures (1 slide per page) are available HERE.

Date Day Topic Chapters Readings Notes Deadlines
1/10 M

Course Overview
Why study birds?


Bird Orders

Why Study Birds

Winter Birds

1/12 W Sampling and Detection Probability  

How You Count

Measurement Error
Detection Probability


1/17 M


1/19 W

Classification, Evolution, Origin of Birds


1,2,3 Evolution of feathers and flight

Early Origin of Feathers 

How many species of birds
Chapters 1-3  
1/24 M

Flight - Anatomy, Form and Function



Chapter 4

1/26 W Flight 5 Power Curves and Bird Flight.pdf

Frigatebird Flight Performance.pdf

Chapter 5

1/31 M Physiology 6  

Chapter 6a

2/2 W Feeding I 6 Bill Size in Darwin's Finches

Chapter 6b

2/7 M Feeding II    

Chapter 6c

2/9 W Senses, brain, vision 7 Birds and Chili Peppers

UV Vision in Birds.pdf

Chapter 7

2/14 M Vocalizations 8   Chapter 8  
2/16 W


      Turn in Field Notebooks
2/21 M  Annual Cycles 9  

Chapter 9

2/23 W Migration 10 Albatross Data Loggers.pdf

Stutchbury Science 2009.pdf

Kays Animal Tracking

Chapter 10

2/28 M Orientation, & Navigation 10

Cochran 1.pdf


Migrant Memory.pdf

Chapter 10

3/2 W Social Behavior 11 Grubb Winter Flocks.pdf Chapter 11 First scientific writing assignment due
3/7 M Mates and Breeding Systems 12,13 Bowerbird Illusions

Chapters 12,13

3/9 W Reproduction 14  

Chapter 14




Spring Break        
3/21 M

Nests and Incubation


Chapter 15

3/23 W

Growth and Development

16   Chapter 16a  
3/28 M

Parental Care Brood Parasitism Cooperative Breeding


Mafia Cowbirds

Chapter 16b

3/30 W EXAM II        
4/4 M


17 Ricklefs 2000.pdf Chapters 17&18  
4/6 W


18 Martin Clutch Size.pdf

Martin Clutch Size2.pdf

TREE Clutch Size.pdf
  Second scientific writing assignment due
4/11 M

Species and Communities

19,20   Chapters 19 & 20  
4/13 W

Conservation: Legislation, Major Principles


  Umbrella Species.pdf

Evaluation of RCW Safe Harbor Program
Chapter 21  
4/18 M

Neotropical Migrants



Artificial Nest.pdf

State of the

Birding in the US (optional)


Neotropical Migrants, Marine Birds,
4/20 W

In Class Identification Test

4/25 M

Alaskan Adventure!

Marine Birds and Shorebirds

  MobileProtectedAreas for Marine Birds

Oil, Seabirds, and Science
Marine and shorebirds  


Final Exam




Course Info / lecture syllabus