Beginners Birdwatching Course 2018

Thursday 1 March to Thursday 24 May

6.30 pm-8.30 pm

Price: £68 Adult RSPB Members, £78 Adult Non-Members

Booking essential

This respected well-liked course is delivered on behalf of the RSPB by our volunteer, Chris Lee, for anyone new to the world of birds - or those of you who just wants to find out more!

At the end of the course you’ll be able to tell your redshank from your greenshank and your swallow from your swift! You’ll learn about migration, equipment, conservation and you’ll be inspired to develop your identification skills further. This course is designed for you - and you’ll be able to find out more about what interests you most in the bird world.

“You’ve really got me hooked into our amazing feathered friends!” was the delightful response of a recent participant.

"The quality of the teaching was second to none. Chris was the perfect man for the job! Nothing was ever too much trouble. We had group learning sessions, fun quizzes, films to watch, talks, diagrams drawn for us, maps shown, etc." 

Venue: Darts Farm, Estuary room

Course Leader: Chris Lee

Start date: Thursday 1 March 2018

Finish date: Thursday 24 May 2018 

Sessions: each 2 hours in length 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm

Number of sessions: 10 including a guided walk at RSPB Bowling Green Marsh nature reserve

Booking essential. Click here to book via Eventbrite 

2018 Weekly Course Programme

* Thurs 1 March - Introduction. Course outline. What kind of birder do you want to be? Bird identification: garden birds (part 1)

* Thurs 8 March - Choosing books, magazines, websites, apps. Recording results. Bird ID: garden birds (part 2) The Hirundines

* Thurs 22 March - Speciation. Bird ID: wildlfowl

* Thurs 5 April - Bird ID: Waders. Bird songs/calls

* Thurs 12 April - The work of the RSPB Bird ID: seabirds

* Thurs 19 April - Choosing equipment: Darts Farm walk

* Thurs 3 May, 5.30 pm - Evening walk - RSPB Bowling Green Marsh nature reserve


* Sat 5 May, 9.30 am - Daytime walk - RSPB Bowling Green Marsh nature reserve

* Thurs 10 May - Bird behaviour. Bird senses. Bird ID: countryside/field

* Thurs 17 May - Migration. Bird ID: raptors

* Thurs 24 May - What’s your favourite and why? Where do you go from here? 

When booking please provide a valid phone number and e-mail as your booking confirmation will be sent via e-mail. We need a valid phone number (landline and mobile) in case we need to get hold of you urgently to update you with changes/cancellation. Our Data Protection statement is detailed on the Eventbrite booking website.


How to get to Darts Farm:   
The RSPB Shop is on the first floor (above Cotswold Outdoor) within the Darts Farm complex on the outskirts of Topsham (approx 4 miles south of Exeter).   
BY BUS: The number 57 Exeter to Exmouth route (which departs/arrives Exeter bus station) stops right outside Darts Farm.   
BY TRAIN: Topsham Station is on the Exeter to Exmouth line and is just 1300m from Darts Farm. From Topsham station you can either   
 * complete the journey  by bus from the stop on Station Road (Darts Farm is only two stops away - Number 57 Exmouth bus)   
 * or walk - turn right into Station Road as you leave the station (where the road barrier arms are), then right again into Elm Grove Road, follow the main road and cross the River Clyst using the new cycle/footbridge. Continue on the footpath along the road to Darts Farm Shopping Village.                    
BY BIKE: Exeter/Topsham Cycle Path continues to Darts Farm.   
BY ROAD: The Darts Farm Shopping Village is on Bridge Hill, on the outskirts of Topsham - it is just off the A376 between Ebford and Clyst St George, 2 miles from M5 Junction 30. Turn off the A376 onto Bridge hill - or if driving from Topsham - from Exeter Road/Topsham High street turn left onto Station Road, right onto Elm Grove Road and then left over the bridge onto Bridge Hill and Darts Farm Shopping Village is easily seen on the right hand side. Ample parking on site. 


Darts Farm is easily accessible by bicycle, public transport or car. For more details see above or use the Sat Nav co-ordinates/Post Code at the top right of this page.

Full list of dates

  • Thursday 1 March 2018
  • Thursday 8 March 2018
  • Thursday 22 March 2018
  • Thursday 5 April 2018
  • Thursday 12 April 2018
  • Thursday 19 April 2018
  • Thursday 3 May 2018
  • Saturday 5 May 2018
  • Thursday 10 May 2018
  • Thursday 17 May 2018
  • Thursday 24 May 2018

Where is it?

  • Lat/lng: 50.685963, -3.44856 (Google Maps)
  • Postcode: EX3 0QH
  • County: Devon

Contact us