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Birding for Beginners


Birding for Beginners

Nurture your love and knowledge of birds with a beginner’s birding class designed to connect you with the birding community and improve your skills in bird identification. We will spend quality time observing and discussing birds and their behavior, to build your understanding of the sights, sounds, behaviors, and natural history of a selection of our feathered friends.

This is a five-week class which will be divided into two sections: online on Thursday evenings and in-person field trips on Sundays. 

Each online class will include lectures and discussions about how to be a birder. We’ll talk about why we bird, and we'll get into the tools and skills birders use to collect observations. We’ll talk about the places we’ll go, the species we’ll see, and why birds want to be there. Each participant will receive an optional “ID assignment” to perform in the field. In field trips, we’ll employ all of our senses to experience and record the birds in our midst. In the end, you'll have about 100 new birds in your brain.

We hope that in this class you’ll connect with nature and birds, with yourself, and with other birders. We welcome a diverse learning community. Let us know if you have access challenges and need assistance.

Binoculars are a must. We will have loaner pairs from GoSky for you to use during the class. You should definitely have a notebook and a smartphone if you use one. Carpooling will be encouraged, especially when the trips are not bike/transit-friendly.

Recording of the first session via Zoom will be available to class participants for a limited period of time.

Instructor: Jen Hajj and field trip leaders

Schedule of the Thursday Zoom Sessions:

  • April 13, 2023 6:30-8:00 pm
  • Aprill 20, 2023 6:30-8:00 pm
  • April 27, 2023 6:30-8:00 pm
  • May 4, 2023 6:30-8:00 pm
  • May 11, 2023 6:30-8:00 pm
  • May 18, 2023 6:30-8:00 pm

Schedule of the Field Trip Sessions:

  • April 23, 2023 8-10 am
  • April 30, 2023 8-10 am
  • May 7, 2023  8-10 am
  • May 14, 2023 8-10 am
  • May 28, 2023 8-10 am

Limited to 16 participants.

To attend the entire course: $135 for SDAS members, $160 for non-members.

Questions can be sent to the course facilitator, Jen Hajj, at

Registration opens on April 1st, 2023. 

Sponsored by GoSky Binoculars. Each participant will receive a pair of loaner binoculars to use during the class. Thanks, GoSky! 


  • San Diego Foundation
    San Diego Foundation
  • USFWS logo
  • City of San Diego

  • County of San Diego
    County of San Diego
  • State Coastal Conservancy
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    SANDAg transnet logo
  • Malk Nature Fund
  • Coastkeeper
  • UCNRS logo
  • Logo for Union Bank