Photo by Kevin Wright.

August 1, 2023

The Science and Art of Banding Wood Ducks

The annual wood duck banding program in Illinois provides waterfowl biologists and land managers with valuable information on migration and survival rates.

Banding of migratory birds in the United States and Canada has been overseen by federal governments since 1920. In Illinois, wood duck banding occurs throughout the state in about 15 different counties each year. Banding sites vary from marsh habitats in northeastern Illinois to wetlands in southern Illinois. Today, approximately 1,500 to 2,500 wood ducks are banded annually in Illinois.

In this two-part video, Dan Holm, retired Illinois Department of Natural Resources Division of Wildlife Resources Waterfowl Program manager, provides an overview of the process for trapping and banding wood ducks, the history of wood duck banding in Illinois, and where the birds hatched in Illinois end up after migration.

Part 1 Process of Trapping and Banding Wood Ducks

Part 2: The Historical Perspective of Wood Duck Banding

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