In 1909 Jack banded his first mallard duck, whom he named Katie, with his name and address on the metal band. On Jan. 10, 1910, Katie was shot by Dr. W. E. Bray of Anderson, South Carolina. This constituted the first complete record of where a bird was banded and where it was shot on the North American continent. This record of Katie’s travels also made Jack one of the earliest people to tag birds for scientific investigation.
In 1915, he started banding Canada geese using the now famous numbered aluminum bands. On the bands Jack had his name, a biblical verse and “Write Box 48, Kingsville, Ontario!”
Banding continues at the sanctuary with our banding nets. We utilize three different permanent banding nets depending on the area where the birds congregate. Once the birds are caught, the fun begins. A lot of preparation is done prior to the catch. The net area must have water pumped to the appropriate depth and must be baited to attract the birds. Each band is pre-rolled into a C shape and laid out for speedy banding. A bird is held by one of our banders grasping their wings as not to harm them. The bird is sexed, meaning we find out if it is male or female. Ducks are easier to sex than geese due to their colour. The band is placed around the bird’s leg and closed to form a “D” shape. It is loose enough not to rub or hurt the bird, but tight enough not to fall off or turn. We only band migratory waterfowl, ducks and geese and only those which do not already have a band on them. Those who already have bands might be part of another research project, so we respectfully don’t add our band to them. Once the data for the bird have been recorded, the bird is released, and we move on to the next. Banding can only occur in the presence of a licenced bander. They oversee the whole process, making sure the correct information is recorded, the birds are not harmed and are healthy during the banding event.
When a band is recovered, its information is submitted through our form and added to our database. Some people request a certificate to gain more information about the band they have recovered. This information is uploaded to our website and stored onsite.
We currently have a Bird Relocation Program where rescue organizations or individuals might want to relocate a migratory waterfowl to our sanctuary due to injury, angel wing or other conditions. We also work with a group to relocate nuisance birds. Our sanctuary only accepts wild ducks and geese, and birds that we already have at our sanctuary, such as peacocks, turkeys, quails and pheasants.
Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions about this program.
Due to Admin restrictions during Covid-19, certificates will be delayed . Kindly contact us for more info. Thank you for your understanding.