IOU Code of Ethics

Code of behavior for Iowa birders

  1. Iowa Birders should act in ways that do not endanger the welfare of birds and other wildlife and should minimize their effect on the environment. To this end we should:
    1. Observe and photograph birds without disturbing them in significant ways.
    2. Not repeatedly chase or flush individual birds.
    3. Use recordings and similar devices sparingly, especially in heavily birded areas or known locations of individual birds.
    4. Stay away from nests and roosts.
    5. Stay on existing paths, trails, roadways, etc in fragile environments.
    6. Leave the habitat in as good a condition as we found it or better.
  2. Iowa Birders should respect the rights of others. We should:
    1. Obtain permission to enter private property, whether posted or not.
    2. Follow posted rules on public and private properties.
    3. Observe all laws, rules, and regulations of public or private birding areas and report violations to appropriate authorities.
    4. Leave gates and fences as found.
    5. Limit requests for permission or information to reasonable times of the day.
    6. Allow those who come after to have the same opportunity to observe birds.
    7. Behave in a manner that will enhance the image of the Iowa Ornithologists' Union to others.
  3. Iowa Birders in groups have special responsibilities.
    1. Group members should:
      1. Act in consideration of the group's interest as well as their own.
      2. Support the leader of the group.
    2. Leaders should:
      1. Assume responsibility for the conduct of the group.
      2. Limit group sizes so as not to threaten the environment.
      3. Teach others birding ethics by word and example.
  4. Iowa Birders recognize the importance of research projects to further our knowledge about birds. We should:
    1. Encourage workers in the field to conduct their research in such a manner as to limit disturbances to birds or the environment.
    2. Encourage our members to participate in research projects.
    3. Not knowingly interfere with research projects.

Adopted by Iowa Ornithologists' Union membership, 21 May 1994