8 practical learning tips for birding by impression (jizz)

Some practical keys of the book "Learning how to identify birds by impression".
1. The active participation of the observer is required: The observer must be involved. The observer must learn to operate variables and stages, to write evaluative sentences, to practice the field and cabinet exercises and to acquire basic information. Although an intense participation of the observer in the learning period is required, the prize is great both in the saving of the long time it takes to acquire the status of expert identifier and in having a holistic view of the birds. If you insist you can acquire the identification by jizz in a few months, which will allow you to take good field data and improve its efficiency in a short time, compared to the classic way of prioritizing plumage.
2. Are the field exercises during the learning phase done after learning to operate each variable or at the end of each stage?: A stage groups variables of the same nature. It is preferable to go to the field to do the exercises of each variable (once the corresponding basic information has been studied). But it is possible that, for practical reasons, the observer prefers to go out to the field to do exercises of the stage as a whole. Not bad, but if you can, practice in the field with each individual variable and dedicate a couple of field days to operate the stage as a whole.
3. Obtaining silhouettes for the operation of the variables of the structure and behavior: Having a set of silhouettes from the Basic Collection, such as those provided by the book, greatly facilitates the learning of the stage of structure and behavior. With the silhouettes, in flight and on the ground, we can exercise the evaluations in the cabinet and evaluate the variables of the structure (size of the bird, silhouette and small structural variables) as well as the behavioral variables (movements in the ground and in flight). To practice the analysis of the plumage the observer will be provided with photos and illustrations that show the plumage. So, use the silhouettes of the book to learn how to evaluate them. But once you have acquired the basic skill and want to practice with a different basic collection, how is each observer provided with their own collection of silhouettes of the new basic collection? You can build silhouettes for private use with a Photoshop from photos on the internet. You can also print on paper complete plumage silhouettes and blackening the inside of the perimeter. Cutting out the photo of a bird with black paper.
4. Age and skill level ID of the observer to learn to ID methodically by jizz: Age is not important to learn to identify by jizz. It matters more the level of expertise already acquired via plumage. It seems that people who have acquired the level of expert identifier via plumage, as simultaneously and unconsciously have been acquiring the iD by jizz, conclude that this technique is not valid for them since they have already acquired it. But this is not entirely true. There are expert observers via plumage who declare that after learning to methodically identify jizz, their efficiency and reliability have multiplied. On the other hand, they reveal that the holistic point of view makes them have a better understanding of the bird integrated into their environment. Finally, understanding how the process of acquisition of impressions works helps them to understand the whole process of identification and thus transmit it better to others.
The people who have not acquired an ID skill level via plumage, are the ones that are better able to understand and acquire the ID by jizz. Within this immense group there are several subgroups. The first group would include children and adolescents. These can start with a simplified version of the method, preferably with a field teacher and other young people of their age with whom to exchange experiences. The second group, would be composed of all those students and postgraduates as well as field technicians and amateur level. These people have not generally reached the skill level via plumage, but they can enter the method in its most complete version. This will allow them to acquire the skill in a long time and have the rest of their lives to perfect themselves and obtain the highest quality data. People belonging to this second group can learn guided by an ID expert by printing or be self-taught with the book. The third group would be made up of professionals who have years of identification via plumage but are not yet experts because their basic collection is very extensive or because they travel a lot, changing their basic collection often and radically, for example those that go from the avifauna of the northern hemisphere to that of the southern hemisphere or tropical hemisphere. Such variability is addressed much better from the methodology of ID by jizz. The fourth group already commented is that of those observers who have already acquired the ID expertise for plumage and associated jizz. Many of them believe that methodically learn to identify by jizz does not bring any improvement, although as we have seen is not entirely true, far from it.
5. Duration and effort of learning for the methodical ID of jizz: The first group, that of children and adolescents, it is good that they begin with a simplified method, that a teacher guides them and that they go as a group to the field. Learning can increase complexity with age and level. If you belong to the second group of students or postgraduates, it is advisable to dedicate an intensive semester with or without a teacher to acquire identification by jizz. We must bear in mind that the jizz methodology can then be applied to the identification of numerous species of fauna, both mega and micro. The advantage is that you have the rest of the race to get sightings and interpretations of first quality and efficiency and that the skill does not stop improving, of growing. Both the third and the fourth group will need a similar time.
6. Time needed to operate a card in the field: Acquired dexterity takes seconds to generate sentences and write them. Even if it takes a few months to acquire the skill, acquired this, it takes a few seconds to operate each variable and perhaps a minute to complete a record in the field. That allows to operate numerous cards in a field day. You can have a lot of basic information to be treated in different ways: analysis and simulation treatment, disclosure, training at different levels, censuses, ...
7. Time to acquire identification by jizz of a group of species: While the skill in the operation of variables and cards is being acquired and impressions are generated, at the same time, species start to be identified by printing. It's a matter of the amount of field practice time. The continued practice or familiarization, multiplies the efficiency. And, from here, you can continue to expand the basic collection with new species or open another basic collection in other habitats or countries. For the first phase a semester well spent would be enough.
8. If an observer always lives in the same place and habitat, is it worth acquiring the ID by jizz?: If an observer who is already an expert in the ID via plumage remains in a small territory with few homogeneous habitats and with few species of birds, it may not be worth the effort, but even if it were just `to cut the routine and have a new point of view of what he has been doing for so many years, it would be worth it. Not to mention that it would improve the efficiency of his skill. Identify a bird, even in bad conditions of sight, including bad weather, remoteness or backlighting, allows not to miss information that would be lost, have a better representation of the birds of the habitat and associate birds whose identification would be lost, to the ecological position that occupy. In the same way you can operate a behavior and assign it to your species. Of course, whoever manages several habitats, or travels to work with birds from other habitats or countries, or has to change waterfowl for land or sea birds, master identification by jizz, will be very useful.


  1. Excelente artículo, tienes mucha razón en lo que dices, muy buena reflexión.


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