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December 14, 2021

The United States Bird Banding Lab’s (BBL) Banders Without Borders Initiative is pushing forward towards its goal to improve communications between banding schemes around the world! The initiative continues to gain momentum, having met with three different national banding schemes in the last few months.  

“We are making great progress and even new connections with every call,” says Dr. Antonio Celis-Murillo. “We are reaching across the globe from Australia to Brazil. Each meeting is unique, and incredibly informative as we compare process, policy, and most importantly share how our teams work and grow.” 

The Banders Without Borders Initiative is a monthly webinar series held once a month with a different scheme. Previously, the BBL has met with New Zealand’s National Bird Banding Scheme and Australia’s Bird and Bat Banding Scheme, each established in the 1950s and holding some 2 million banding records. Australia is unique encompassing several bat species banded within the scheme. 

The most recent webinar was held with the Brazilian National Ringing Scheme (SNA). Establishing a stronger connection with Brazil holds importance because many bird species banding in the U.S and Canada migrate back and forth between these countries. US banded shorebirds, especially, carrying easily spotted auxiliary plastic field readable markers are often found in Brazil and reported to the BBL and vise versa. Well established communications allow sharing data seamlessly.  

Video Transcript
Brazil's National Ringing Scheme introduces themselves to the BBL

Created in 1977, the Brazilian National Ringing Scheme already holds around 1 million banding records and receiving approximately 700 encounters yearly.  

The BBL will continue to reach out to other national banding schemes in the coming months as an important first-step towards a global network of shared information and data exchange.