The North American Banding Program

Bird banding is important for studying the movement, survival and behavior of birds. About 60 million birds representing hundreds of species have been banded in North America since 1904. About 4 million bands have been recovered and reported.

Data from banded birds are used in monitoring populations, setting hunting regulations, restoring endangered species, studying effects of environmental contaminants, and addressing such issues as Avian Influenza, bird hazards at airports, and crop depredations. Results from banding studies support national and international bird conservation programs such as Partners in Flight, the North American Waterfowl Management Plan, and Wetlands for the Americas.

The North American Bird Banding Program is under the general direction of the U.S. Geological Survey and the Canadian Wildlife Service.

Cooperators include the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Mexico's National Commission for the Knowledge and Use of Biodiversity and Secretary of the Environment and Natural Resources; other federal, state and provincial conservation agencies; universities; amateur ornithologists; bird observatories; nature centers; nongovernmental organizations such as Ducks Unlimited and the National Audubon Society; environmental consulting firms and other private sector businesses.

However, the most important partner in this cooperative venture is you, the person who voluntarily reported a recovered band. Thank you for your help.

Banding the bluebirds allows one to develop a story about individual birds. You will discover that some banded females returned to the same box they occupied last year. If you are interested in learning about banding bluebirds in your area, contact:

Jane Brockway, Banding Administrator
P.O. Box 1188
Superior, MT 59872

Jane can put you in touch with individuals in your region that are banding or will help you directly. It is a fantastic experience to hold both the young and old in your hand and to be part of a program that is striving to learn more about bluebird populations and habitats.
Adult Feeding Young Bird Just Banded. Photo courtesy Erv Davis
Adult feeding a yound bird just banded, by Erv Davis

If you should come across a dead banded bluebird, you can remove the band, flatten it, and note the numbers. You may report it with the USGS by clicking here:

If you would like assistance, please either call or E-Mail:

Jane Brockway, Banding Administrator
P. O. Box 1188
Superior, MT 59872

Please mention where you found the bluebird and, if possible, its condition.
Include your name, address and phone number. Jane will contact you.
Thank you in advance for your cooperation.