Bird Banding Workshops

Bird Banding Workshop & Fundraiser

For Intermediate or Advanced Banders

Check back for 2024 dates

Announcing our Bird Banding Workshop and Fundraiser!

Osa Birds: Research and Conservation is pleased to offer our annual bird banding workshops! Please check back for 2024 workshops.

The course is open to intermediate or advanced banders that want to work on or perfect their banding skills with tropical bird species. To be qualified for this course you need to have extracted and banded a minimum of 100 birds!

You will be learning from, and working closely with NABC certified staff at our MoSI banding station in Rancho Quemado located on the north end of the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica between Rincon and Drake Bay.

December is the start of the resident bird breeding season and the over-wintering period for passerine Neotropical migratory birds. The Osa Peninsula, located in the South Pacific region of Costa Rica, is renowned for its biological diversity and its more than 500 bird species which includes several regional endemics such as the Black-cheeked Ant-Tanager, Mangrove Hummingbird and Yellow-billed Cotinga.  These birds (below) are some of the resident birds we captured during our 2022 MoSI bird banding season.

A Snapshot of your Day

Mornings feature hands-on training in the field while afternoons are devoted to lectures, demonstrations, and in-depth instruction on various aspects of bird banding. General topics covered during the 6-day session include:

  • netting and trapping techniques,
  • removal of birds from mist nets,
  • proper handling and processing of birds (including biometrics, ageing and sexing, molt terminology, skulling), 
  • banders’ and professional ethics
  • tropical/neotropical birds found in the Osa region. 

The majority of our bird captures are Costa Rican full time resident birds with only a few scattered neotropical migratory birds. Many migrant birds are canopy dwellers and don’t generally make it down to our nets, but resident birds are abundant and never disappoint! Expect a lot of interesting local colorful birds that will knock your socks off! Our most abundant captures have been Orange-collared Manakins, Ochre-bellied Flycatchers, Red-capped Manakins and Wedge-billed Woodcreepers.


You will be staying at Casa Bosque, a lovely new place in Rancho Quemado on the north end of the Osa Peninsula, constructed and designed specifically for groups. The owner is Yolanda Rodriguez, one of our local bird banders and collaborator in just about everything we do. She and her husband saw the need to create a space for medium to large groups that were very clean and comfortable! They are on their way to realizing their dream and we are going to help them by staying there. We have already had groups and individuals stay there and have only great things to say. Rooms are shared with double beds for up to three people at most in each room. Each shared room also has its own bathroom.

Your Trainer and our Partners

Our NABC (North American Banding Council) certified trainer is Holly Garrod! Holly has 12 years banding experience having banded over 18,000 birds and trained over 120 people to date. She has also led 15 workshops throughout the Caribbean and Central America! Holly has worked with Osa Birds since 2020 training local community members to become certified banders at our four MoSI banding stations in: Dos Brazos de Rio Tigre and Rancho Quemado. We are excited to bring her back for this training course and another year of MoSI. Holly is currently the avian ecologist for the University of Montana’s Bird Ecology Lab.

MoSI (Monitoreo de Supervivencia Invernal – Monitoring Overwinter Survival of Migratory Birds) is an Institute for Bird Populations program run throughout Latin America in conjunction with MAPS stations in the United States and Canada.

*This is not an NABC approved course however hours and experience accumulated can be useful for eventual NABC certification.


Your course is $1500 plus a suggested donation of $500. Your workshop includes instruction, food and lodging plus tax, and airport transfer to and from Puerto Jimenez to Rancho Quemado. Domestic flights to and from San Jose to Puerto Jimenez are provided at an additional cost. The cost does not include international flights to/from Costa Rica.

Full payment is due before October 15 unless other arrangements are made. Your payment is fully refundable if the participant cancels at least 30 days before the start of class. Payment is refundable minus a $50 administrative fee if the participant cancels within 30 days before the start of class.

Our Fundraiser: How This Workshop Supports Osa Birds

This course also doubles as an annual fundraiser for Osa Birds. A suggested tax-deductible donation of $500 (or an amount of your choice) is requested for your attendance in the workshop. Your gift will help pay local biologists, and fund our ongoing monitoring projects and MoSI banding stations. Our goal for this workshop is to provide quality instruction and an experience of a lifetime while supporting avian conservation work in Costa Rica. It is Osa Bird’s mission to protect birds and their habitats through research, education, and conservation initiatives. Please help support our efforts!

Combining this workshop with MoSI

Our bird banding season starts in December at all of our stations on the peninsula. Our banding workshop/fundraiser is also held in December. We thought, why not combine to two. Our local banders in Rancho Quemado, (Yolanda, Nuria and Luz), are in their third year of banding and while they are not quite independent banders, they are really good! That said, this is your workshop, but we thought it would be great to bring our groups together as a way for you, a workshop participant, to help them with their bird banding MoSI pulse and for them to assist you and your trainers in the workshop. Nuria and Luz were there for a few days at last years workshop to help out and everyone loved them – and… we took note!! We’re pretty sure you will love them too. Plus you will have the opportunity to see all of the other conservation and science related projects we have going on in Rancho Quemado such as our new motus station and the Quira Native Plants Nursery!

Costa Rica Vaccines

Costa Rica has no COVID related restrictions.

There are no current vaccines required for entry into Costa Rica, but we do recommend a current Tetanus vaccine.

How to Register

To register please fill out our Online form. For additional information please contact or

2022 Bird Banding Workshop Pics

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