Family Days

To accommodate the increasing number of parents with children who wish to visit the banding station VARC has developed a Family Day to provide parents and children with an engaging and interactive educational experience, fostering awareness and appreciation of birds and the environment.

Family Day Dates (2019)

  • Saturday September 7th (with Sunday 8th as backup in case of rain!)

The program is a structured morning field trip to VARC’s Colony Farm Banding Station where participants are introduced to the research techniques required for monitoring migratory birds and the population ecology and ecosystem dynamics of wild bird populations, in an age specific way. Parents and children will learn about bird migration; the various habitats and communities they depend on during both spring and fall migration and the breeding season; and the conservation actions required to protect these habitats to ensure the long term survival of bird species.

The structure of site visit starts with a short talk when visitors arrive to tell them who we are, what we’re doing and why we’re doing it. Participants are then invited to watch the banding, take photos and ask questions. We then supervise while each visitor gets the opportunity to hold and release a bird. At the end of the visit we give another short talk about habitat conservation and the importance of safeguarding areas like Colony Farm for breeding and migratory birds. We also provide visitors with information on how they can help to make a difference by creating bird friendly gardens and campuses; by preventing window strikes and by putting up feeders and nest boxes.

A donation of $10 per person for Family Day is suggested which may be paid in advance by clicking on the donate button above and clicking (‘other amount’) or at the station when you attend the event.

To schedule a Family Day visit please click on the Get In Touch button above and register with your name and number of family members who wish to attend.

VARC Family Day Brochure (Download PDF file for printing)

“My kids come away from Family Day inspired and very, very enthusiastic about birds and bird conservation. They spent that afternoon playing “banding station” with their Audubon bird stuffies. I heard them more than once shout, “Its a re-trap!”. They are both asking when they can go back. What could be better than that?!”

Krista De Groot – Canadian Wildlife Service (CWS)

Please note: In order for us to ensure the safety and welfare of birds the number of people attending Family Days must be controlled and only people who are registered can be allowed to attend.