MDC offers free Birding 4 Beginners class April 28 at Parkville

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Kansas City
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Kansas City, Mo. – Birding is an outdoor avocation that can be as simple and easy, or as strenuous and complicated, as a person chooses. Either way, birding offers a knowledge-filled connection with nature. The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) will a free Birding 4 Beginners class from 8 to 11:30 a.m. on Thursday, April 28, at the Parma Woods Shooting Range and Education Center near Parkville.

Experts have recorded more than 400 species of birds in Missouri, though some from robins to red-tailed hawks are seen more frequently. Unusual bird sightings do make a birder’s outing afield more exciting, such as the golden eagle seen on March 31 in eastern Missouri. Birding is another word for birdwatching, only with an effort to understand more about each bird’s habits and role in ecosystems they frequent.

This class will teach participants about identifying birds and how various types have adapted to natural habitats such as forests, wetlands, grasslands, and urban settings. Instructor Nathan Woodland, Parma Woods manager, will talk about the information sources people can use to help identify birds and learn about their lifecycles. Digital resources such as eBird will be covered. Woodland will also talk about useful gear such as binoculars and journals, places to go birding, and ways to keep a walk outdoors safe and enjoyable.

After the lessons, participants will head out on the hiking trails at Parma Woods and look for birds. MDC staff will point them out and give tips on visual or auditory ways to locate them. Spring is a good time to go birding. Both resident and migrating wild birds are active.

This class is open to all ages. COVID-19 precautions will be observed. Registration is required. To register, visit For more information about wild birds and birding in Missouri, visit