What does it take to collaborate with our partners in migratory bird conservation south of the U.S.? For working with many of these countries, being able to speak Spanish is a very important first step. If you didn’t take Spanish in high school or college, or if what you learned is now rusty, it may seem daunting to build or hone your language skills as an adult. But the effort is richly rewarded, as having those language skills opens amazing doors to friendships and collaborations with ornithologists across the Western Hemisphere. Check into opportunities to take Spanish in a class setting, an online course, or hire a local Spanish-speaking tutor. Even better, and by far the most fun, take an immersion course in a Spanish-speaking country while living with a local family! There are many such offerings in Mexico and Central America, which can allow you to not only learn the language but also immerse yourself in the rich cultures of the region. Then start thinking about ways to not only reach out about birds and their conservation to the Spanish-speakers in your own community, but also to potential collaborators for shared species conservation in Latin America!


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