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Ornithologists are scientists who study birds
Ornithologists are scientists who study birds

People have been interested in birds since ancient times. Aristotle was one of the first to study and describe where birds disappear in winter. The philosopher decided that they wait out the cold in their burrows, and return when it gets warmer. He also hypothesized that some species change their plumage for the winter and become completely different birds. And many believed him, since it was more than two thousand years ago.

But science does not stand still, today everyone knows that birds go to warm countries in winter. But not everyone knows what scientists who study birds are called. But it is thanks to the representatives of this profession that we know so much about birds.

Bird scientists

People who are professionally engaged in the study of birds are called ornithologists, and the science of birds is called ornithology. The term was coined by the Italian Ulisse Aldrovandi in the 16th century.

There are a lot of directions in ornithology: a person can sit in the laboratory, studying experimental samples, or travel the world in search of rare species. But the main tasks are the study of the physiology, ethology, phenology and ecology of birds, the search for unknown and the conservation of endangered species.

How birds are studied

People do birdwatching

The simplest and most common method is conventional observation or birdwatching. This is done in nature, when the birds are in their natural habitat. They often use binoculars so they don't feel in danger.

Birdwatching is not limited to bird scientists. There is also amateur ornithology where people observe just for fun. This is especially common in Western countries. But even a hobby can be useful: often it is amateurs who accidentally discover new species of birds.

To study migration, lifespan, change in the number of species, use the method of ringing birds. To do this, they catch a wild bird, put a ring with a number on it and let it go. Then they catch her again or find a body with a ring, on the basis of which they draw conclusions.

Bird with a ring

The ring is put on more than one bird. To do this, you need to select a certain number of birds. For example, one in a thousand. Otherwise, it will be impossible to understand how the population has changed.

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