YMOS is a subgroup of the Maryland Ornithological Society (MOS) and was established to make the world of birds accessible to school age youth. The group supports youth birding throughout the State of Maryland by:
- Facilitating communication among youth birders throughout the State
- Providing opportunities for young birders to get started in birding and to help develop their skills
- Providing educators with resources and opportunities to implement programs
Specific Programs and Activities of YMOS include:
- The Youth Backpack Program – Each year YMOS provides each of the Maryland Ornithological Society (MOS) chapters with a backpack to be distributed to a deserving youth in their area. Each chapter decides how to award the backpack. The backpack contains binoculars, field guides, a lens pen, and free membership to a local MOS chapter for the year. For more information for your specific chapter, consult the chapter president. These are found on the MOS website.
- Youth Trips – While each chapter runs its own field trips, and youth are always welcome on these, YMOS runs a series of trips throughout the year for youth only. These are always listed both on the website and the YMOS Facebook page. See the trips link above.
- World Series of Birding – YMOS also supports a team of Maryland youth at the World Series of Birding. This international birding event in Cape May, NJ in early May each year, although disguised as a competition, actually raises money for bird conservation worldwide. It is a fantastic learning venue for student participants, and any student is welcome to apply. See the World Series of Birding link above.
- Summer Birding Program – Each June YMOS co-sponsors with Washington College a week long summer programs for both educators and youth. The program provides opportunities for both educators and youth to learn birding skills, how to use technology to access, collect, and report data. All educators and students incoming to grades 7 – 12 may apply. Details and application information are found at the Summer Program link above.
MOS Website – www.mdbirds.org