Passerine Bander Trainee Quiz

Welcome to the Holiday Beach Migration Observatory (HBMO) passerine bander trainee photo quiz.  What follows are 101 questions asking the identity of birds in photos, most with additional questions about age, sex, and molt.

How to use this Quiz

  1. Click on the hyperlinks in the left column to view the photos.
  2. Use only evidence visible in the photos, along with occasional text hints, to answer the questions.
  3. All birds shown here have been banded, or could be banded at Holiday Beach, Ontario, Canada.  (Many other Eastern North American sites might find this quiz useful.)
  4. You may use any reference materials (Pyle 1997 recommended) to complete this quiz, except internet sources (matching photos is like cheating, and deprives you of learning).
  5. You may release one bird “unbanded” (i.e., leave unidentified).
  6. Please use the correct Alpha Code for species identifications.  (A.O.U. numbers are not necessary here.)
  7. If you are asked to age or sex a bird, also please briefly indicate how aged and how sexed. Remember that sometimes “U” may be the correct answer.
  8. Please work independently.
  9. You may want to print this page as an answer sheet, as taking the quiz may take some time.
  10. There is a link to the answers at the bottom of this quiz.  NOTE:  The answer page contains 103 photos, as well as extensive text explaining the answers.  Those with slower dial-up internet connections should be patient, as the answer page may take a very long time to load onto your computer.

Scoring

  • Correct species identifications are worth 3 points.
  • All other correct answers are worth 1 point each.
  • If you feel you can do more with a bird than has been asked, please feel free to do so.  In these cases correct answers will earn extra credit (1 point for each additional correct component, i.e., age or sex); incorrect additional answers will not incur any penalty.
  • This quiz is manually self-scored (by you!); an automated scoring system may be developed in the near future.

Acknowledgments

I wish to thank the Powdermill Biological Station,  the field research station of the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, and the Rouge River Bird Observatory, for allowing photos from their websites to be posted here anonymously, and the North American Banding Council (NABC) for linking to this site.  Special thanks to Allen T. Chartier, the original quiz creator.

 

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