Bird Banding Laboratory


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Age (Year Class) Codes

NUMERIC
CODE
ALPHA
CODE
ALPHA
TRANSLATION
DESCRIPTION
0 U Unknown A bird that cannot be placed in any classes below . Except in cases where data were not recorded or have been lost during the nesting season, ONLY BIRDS BANDED AFTER THE BREEDING SEASON AND BEFORE JANUARY 1 CAN BE CORRECTLY CODED "U".
1 AHY After Hatching Year A bird known to have hatched before the calendar year of banding; year of hatch otherwise unknown. Example: Banded 1997 - Hatched before January 1, 1997. Birds that would have been coded "U" on December 31 "graduate" to class "AHY" on January 1.
2 HY Hatching Year A bird capable of sustained flight and known to have hatched during the calendar year in which it was banded. Example: Banded 1997 - Hatched 1997.
3 J Juvenile Nestling or recent fledgling, Unable to determine which new code to use.
4 L Local A young bird incapable of sustained flight. After a young bird achieves sustained flight it becomes an "HY" until December 31.
5 SY Second Year A bird known to have hatched in the calendar year preceding the year of banding and in its second calendar year of life. Example: Banded 1997 - Hatched 1996.
6 ASY After Second Year A bird known to have hatched earlier than the calendar year preceeding the year of banding; year of hatch otherwise unknown. Example: Banded 1997 - Hatched 1995 or earlier.
7 TY Third Year A bird known to have hatched in the calendar year two years prior to the year of banding, now in its third calendar year of life. Example: Banded 1997 - Hatched 1995.
8 ATY After Third Year A bird known to have hatched prior to two years prior to the year of banding, now in at least its fourth calendar year of life. Example: Banded 1997 - Hatched 1994 or earlier.

 

How Aged Codes

CODE DESCRIPTION
0 cloacal examination (waterfowl only)
1 adult plumage
2 juvenal plumage
3 eye color
A nestling in nest--no flight feathers present
B nestling in nest--flight feathers in pin
C nestling recently fledged, incapable of powered flight
F feather wear in the flight feathers
J retained juvenal plumage (wispy tertials/notched tail etc)
L molt limit present
M multiple ages of remiges (wing feathers)
N molt limit absent
P primary covert shape and/or primary feather shape/wear
S skulling (not including pinhole windows)
T tail shape and tail wear
W pinhole windows (see skulling)
X not attempted
Z web tag (or other auxiliary marker)