How many birds are banded?

As of August 13, 2018 and since 1960*, the BBL has received over 64 million banding records. Since the inception of the North American Bird Banding Program, the BBL has received over 4 million encounter records. On average, over the past decade, the BBL received 1.2 million banding and 87,000 encounter records per year.

Total numbers by species groups:

Bird Group # of bandings # of encounters
Loons and Grebes 33,385 1,779
Alcids 293,242 6,432
Gulls/Terns/Albatross/other Seabirds 8,129,379 721,080
Ducks 13,864,430 2,177,526
Geese 5,878,853 1,527,014
Swans 36,526 20,460
Herons/Ibis/Rails/other Marsh Birds 483,043 17,622
Shorebirds 997,601 19,798
Doves and Pigeons 2,891,277 155,987
Raptors (including Owls) 2,330,024 84,043
Near Passerines and Passerines 38,795,972 501,240

*Banding data from 1914 to 1959 are not available in electronic format.

Where are the grouse, quail, turkey, pheasant? These birds are no longer banded with federal bands. Each state or province uses their own bands on these birds, as they are not covered by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.

Retrieve summaries of banding and encounter data