Today starts “The Great Backyard Bird Count!” The GBBC will take place in mid-February every year. This annual 4-day event engages bird lovers of all ages in counting birds to create a real-time snapshot of where the birds are. It’s free, fun, and easy! Everyone is welcome to participate – from beginning bird watchers to experts. It takes as little as 15 minutes on one day, or you can count for as long as you like each day of the event.
What Information are Scientists Looking for?
The best part? You’re helping science and participating in something BIG! Scientists will use your worldwide observations to help get the “big picture” about bird populations.
Scientists are using YOUR data to answer the following questions:
• How will the weather and climate change influence bird populations?
• Some birds, such as winter finches, appear in large numbers during some years but not others. Where are these species from year to year, and what can we learn from these patterns?
• How will the timing of birds’ migrations compare with past years?
• How are bird diseases, such as West Nile virus, affecting birds in different regions?
• What kinds of differences in bird diversity are apparent in cities versus suburban, rural, and natural areas?
Learn about birds and bird watching, and get more information about the GBBC at www.birdcount.org.
History of the Great Backyard Bird Count
In 1998, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and National Audubon Society launched the Great Backyard Bird Count as the first online citizen-science project to collect data on wild birds and to display the results in near real-time on-line. More than 100,000 people, in 111 countries counted 33,464,616 birds, documenting 4,258 species—more than one-third of the world’s bird species!
How can Kids, Schools, and Families Get Involved?
Register to count birds in your backyard or playground!
Count birds for at least 15 minutes Feb 14-17th. Use this bird list as an identification tool.
Explore the on-line data and maps! Great geography and science lessons.
There’s a photo contest– enter it with your photos or check out some of the other amazing pictures!
Print yourself a certificate of participation!
We will be hiking at a state park to look for our birds this weekend. Will you participate? Let me know if you count birds too!