Bird lovers of all ages and expertise are encouraged to participate in the Birds of Prey class presented by the Rocky Mountain Raptor Program and Colorado Division of Wildlife’s Watchable Wildlife Program. The class will be held on three Saturdays during November from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and taught by Judy Scherpelz, director of the Rocky Mountain Raptor Program.
The class is open to all members in the community and is geared toward those who are committed to bird watching as well as people who are new to the bird world.
"I present the class with simple explanations to accommodate all interest levels," Scherpelz said. "The more you know about birds and their environment, the more enjoyment you will get out of watching them in their natural surroundings."
Scherpelz has been teaching the class for 14 years and says that it continues to grow because people want to learn more.
Session one, "Why Birds are Cool," is Nov. 6. The focus will be to examine how birds function and why they do what they do. Lectures and demonstrations on the anatomy and physiology of birds of prey, as well as courtship and breeding, population trends, migration and environmental issues will be presented.
Session two, Nov. 13, will address "What Bird was That?" The class will study the habits of individual species of Colorado. Slide shows and live bird demonstrations will be used to identify hawks, falcons, eagles and owls.
Session three, "Hey, I saw an Eagle!" Nov. 20, will be a field trip visiting a variety of habitats throughout northern Colorado. The class will concentrate on how and where to observe birds of prey, field identification of birds and birds of interest. Session one or two must be attended in order to participate in session three.
Cost of each session is $50 or three sessions for $125. All fees will help support the Rocky Mountain Raptor Program. Classes will be held at Colorado State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital, Room 221 at 300 W. Drake. Registration deadline is Nov.1. To register, call (970) 297-0389. For late registration or for more information, call the same number.
The Rocky Mountain Raptor Program is dedicated to providing medical care, rehabilitation, and release for injured birds of prey. These activities are used as a basis for educational presentations for local school children and community organizations. The educational presentations are designed to promote the value of raptors, wildlife, conservation, and environmental awareness, and to teach ways in which the public can become involved in these issues.