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River FAQs

Who can visit?

Everyone is welcome to visit our site! In the past, we have welcomed families, school field trips (pre-k through university), scout troops, church groups, birding and nature groups, university students, businesses and many more.

How much does it cost?

It is completely free to visit! Our goal is for everyone who visits us to gain a love and appreciation for nature and an understanding of the work we are doing to conserve it. We never want price to hold someone back from what we feel is the life-changing experience of being face-to-face with wild birds. If you enjoy your visit, please make a donation to help us continue our work: Our river project is funded entirely from donations and volunteer support!

Is there a bathroom on site?

There are no restrooms on site. The nearest facilities are a 4 minute drive from the site, at Discovery State Park. We recommend a visit to Discovery before you come to see us :)

When should I arrive?

You should plan to arrive before 10am, and plan to stay at least 1.5 hours to see a few net checks. This will ensure you have the best chance of seeing some birds.

On public banding dates we band for about 5 hours, and times will be posted on the event page. Drop in any time!

Group field trips will choose a morning time slot after registration.

Do I need to schedule my visit?

It depends. If you are a group of 15+, you can register for a field trip on our signup page: For smaller groups, banding dates that are open to drop-in visitors will be posted on our Banding Schedule Page. Months available for field trips are: July, August, September, October.

When should I schedule?

ASAP! You should schedule with us as soon as you begin planning your trip. Our field trip schedule fills up fast, and we have had to turn away groups! Register for a field trip on our signup page here:

What should I bring?

All visitors should bring water, snacks, necessary meals, and appropriate outdoor clothing. Don’t forget your sunscreen, hats, binoculars, cameras, and field guides. Plan for lows in the 40’s in the spring: bring a jacket and long pants. Visitors planning to go on net runs to see how we capture the birds should wear closed-toe shoes and long pants. There is POISON IVY at this location!

Do you offer guided field trips or activities?

Yes! Our crews are trained for public outreach and education, and we have an on-site education coordinator available to give an overview of our projects and to answer any questions.

We offer various pre-trip classroom presentations or lessons, and games and activities for groups, targeted for the ages of your group. Contact Heidi in advance for more information and to schedule activities. Topics include: migration, habitat, ecosystems, and bird adaptations. We have presentations in a variety of lengths for ages pre-k through adult.

Is there any way to get to the station besides driving?

Yes! The Boise River Greenbelt passes our site!

Can I bring my dog?

Dogs are allowed only if they are on leash. We ask that visitors please not bring their dogs into the banding station because of bird safety issues. Even the most well behaved dog can get caught in the songbird nets, and most dogs will get frustrated since they will need to be leashed away from the banding area or left inside a car.

Someone in my group has limited mobility. Would we enjoy a visit to your site?

Yes! Please contact us if you need any help accessing the site. You should get ahold of us in advance to make sure the layout of our site will accommodate your particular situation. The road leading to the banding station is gated to prevent motor vehicle access, but on special request we can open the gate to allow driving access to those with limited mobility. The ground near the banding area is covered in deep gravel, allowing access to some walkers and wheelchairs with assistance. You may bring your own chair to get close to the banding action.

Contact us:

For questions or information about education programs and field trip activities:

Heidi Ware—Education and Outreach Director


For scheduling questions, contact Outreach Coordinator Heather Hayes: