Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The Great Backyard Bird Count -- February 12-15, 2010


When was the last time you changed the world in 15 minutes? 

We're excited about the chance.  Denny and I are participating in the Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC), sponsored by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, the Audubon Society, and Bird Studies Canada.

The count is from February 12-15, and it's easy to take part, anywhere in North America.  Denny and I are going to watch/count birds at our front and backyard feeding areas.  From inside the house...could it be easier to be a wildlife champion?  

This post is a challenge to all my friends and readers--try it yourselves, do a Backyard Bird Count.

You don't actually need a backyard or any kind of yard, just a place to watch birds for at least 15 minutes a day--park, school, churchyard, graveyard, beach, anywhere there are birds. Do it one day or every day of the Count.  Once a day or more, your choice.
It's easy.  Round up a pair of binoculars and a bird book.  Add a friend if you want company.  I like watching with Denny because our four eyes are better than my two.  

Count the greatest number of individuals of each species that you see together at any one time during a watch period.   

GBBC has **tally sheets you can print out listing the species for your area. (Follow the link on 'tally sheet', enter your town and state or zip code and voila, a list of possible birds for your area broken out in families--sparrows, finches, gulls, etc..)

Report by entering your checklist online, one for each watch-period.  It's easy and fast. You'll join thousands of citizen-scientists contributing data toward understanding and preserving the world's bird populations.  

As good as helping the birds, you'll be helping yourself--
Focusing on nature clears the mind. Embracing beauty helps you see life in new ways. Connecting to the world creates happiness.

And your brain will grow from the exercise. 

...maybe this opportunity is even better for the watchers than the birds...
For my blogging friends, do a post about your GBBC experience and drop by Hill Country Mysteries to enter the URL in the widget on that day's post.  We'll all share your experience.

Words and photos by Kathleen Scott,for her blog Hill Country Mysteries. Copyright 2009-2010.
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