Christmas Bird Count
|When: Jan 05, 2013 from 07:00 am to 05:00 pm|
What’s the oldest and grandest tradition in birding? Christmas Bird Counts, of course! All over the Americas, birders will be participating in one-day counts between Dec. 15, 2012 and Jan. 5, 2013. Portland Audubon counters will be heading out Saturday, Jan. 5.
Christmas Bird Count 2012 is complete! Thanks to everyone who participated
View final results from the 2012 count
Oregon Christmas Bird Count Calendar
By Wink Gross, compiler, Portland Christmas Bird Count
What’s the oldest and grandest tradition in birding? Christmas Bird Counts, of course! Begun in 1900 as an alternative to the traditional wanton slaughter of anything that flew during Christmas Day “side hunts”, hundreds of Christmas Bird Counts are now conducted throughout the Western Hemisphere and continue to contribute valuable scientific data to the longest existing record of bird population trends. Naturally, everyone likes the idea of contributing to science, but the real reason they’ve exploded in popularity? They’re so much fun!
All over the Americas, birders will be participating in one-day counts between Dec. 15, 2012 and Jan. 5, 2013. The Audubon Society of Portland conducted its first Christmas count in 1926. According to the official 111th Christmas Bird Count issue of "American Birds", Portland is the 3rd largest count (in number of participants) of all. Last year, 208 field observers and 112 feeder watchers found 127 species, a record for the Portland Count. This year our 87th count is on Saturday, Jan. 5. Will you help us try to break that record?
The Christmas Bird Count is a great way for birders of all levels to enjoy a day in the field and sharpen their birding skills. You will also have the opportunity to meet others who share your interest in birds and to discover some good local spots to find birds. And you will contribute to scientific knowledge. In fact, the Christmas Bird Count is one of the best ways for the amateur birder to advance ornithology: the data are sent to the Laboratory of Ornithology at Cornell University, where over the years Christmas Bird Count records have been used to study changes in bird populations and wintering ranges. A quite amazing bibliography of Christmas Bird Count research and the entire historical record of all Christmas Bird Counts may be found at the National Audubon website.
Each Christmas Bird Count attempts to count all the birds in a 15 mile diameter circle on one given day. In addition to the Portland Count, roughly 50 other Counts will be conducted in Oregon and SW Washington this year during the 3 weeks surrounding the holidays. Some of the counts in NW Oregon are listed below.
Want to participate in the Portland Christmas Bird Count? Look at the map of the Portland CBC circle and pick an area you would like to help cover. (It need not be where you reside.) Contact the area leader, who will tell you where and what time to meet on Jan. 5. The area leaders will put together teams to balance birding skills and cover as much of their area as possible. Most teams go out for the whole day, 7 a.m. until 5 p.m., but you can usually make arrangements if you need to stop earlier. Can’t decide which area? Contact me, Wink Gross, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 503-226-3842.
Can’t do the Portland Count on Jan. 5? Check out the other Counts around the state. Pick one that suits your schedule, and contact the compiler directly.
Feeder Watchers Needed, Too!
A day tramping around in the cold and wet doesn’t appeal to you? You may still be able to participate. The Portland Christmas Count welcomes reports from “Feeder Watchers”. Feeder Watcher observations are very important for certain species, such as Anna’s Hummingbirds and goldfinches. If you happen to live within the Count Circle (see Google map) and maintain a birdfeeder, we’ll want to know what you saw on Count Day. You need count birds for only an hour to make a significant contribution. Remember, only birds seen on the actual day of the Christmas Bird Count “count”. Download the Portland CBC Feederwatch Checklist (pdf) or contact Wink Gross, 503-226-3842.
Area Leaders for Portland CBC
- Area 1: Columbia Riparian
Tony DeFalco | 503-224-2064 | email@example.com
- Area 2: Southeast Portland
Dan Strong | 503-742-9093 | firstname.lastname@example.org
- Area 3: Lake Oswego
Rick Brown | 503-222-1146 | email@example.com (email preferred)
- Area 4: Beaverton
Lori Hennings | 503-797-1940 or 503-329-5003 | firstname.lastname@example.org
- Area 5: Northwest Hills/Forest Park
Steve Engel (after Dec. 22) | 971-222-6119 or 503-640-1123 | email@example.com