An American Goldfinch in winter plumage could be one of the birds you count as part of the annual bird counts taking place across the country.

Birding enthusiasts join 113th annual Christmas Bird Count

The Christmas Bird Count is a project of the National Audubon Society in the U.S. and is coordinated in Canada by Bird Studies Canada.

More than 12,000 volunteers across Canada – and over 60,000 continent-wide – will be counting birds from December 14, 2012 to January 5, 2013. Many will rise before dawn and brave winter weather to participate in the world’s longest running wildlife census, begun in 1900.

The Christmas Bird Count is a project of the National Audubon Society in the United States and is coordinated in Canada by Bird Studies Canada. The Count will undergo several significant changes beginning this year as both organizations build on the program’s success to entice birdwatchers to lend their eyes and ears year round. Fees to participate in the count will be dropped to encourage greater participation, and the annual published report, American Birds, will go digital in 2013, saving more trees for the birds.

The 113th CBC is expected to be larger than ever, expanding its geographical coverage and accumulating information about the winter distributions of various birds.

Today, volunteers from every Canadian province and territory, all 50 of the United States, parts of Central and South America, Bermuda, the West Indies, and Pacific Islands, count and record every individual bird and bird species seen in a specified area.

“This is not just about counting birds,” says Dick Cannings, Bird Studies Canada’s program coordinator. “Data from the Christmas Bird Count are at the heart of hundreds of peer-reviewed scientific studies and inform decisions by wildlife managers across Canada.

Because birds are early indicators of environmental threats to habitats we share, this is a vital survey of North America and, increasingly, the Western Hemisphere.”

Christmas Bird Count data have revealed the dramatic impact climate change is already having on birds, and a disturbing decline in common birds, including the Rusty Blackbird. The many decades of data not only help identify birds in need of conservation action, but also reveal success stories. The Christmas Bird Count helped document the comeback of the Bald Eagle and significant increases in waterfowl populations, both the result of conservation efforts.

Last year’s count shattered records in Canada. A total of 412 counts involving over 12,000 participants tallied 3.9 million birds of 303 species.

The count began in 1900 when Dr. Frank Chapman, founder of Bird-Lore (which evolved into Audubon magazine) suggested an alternative to the holiday “side hunt,” in which teams competed to see who could shoot the most small game, including birds. Chapman proposed that people count birds instead.

Three Christmas Bird Counts will be conducted in the local area. New Denver will conduct theirs on Dec. 27; Fauquier/Burton on Dec. 28; and Nakusp on Dec. 29. For further information on these contact Richard Johnson (New Denver), Ruth Bumpus (Fauquier) or Gary Davidson (Nakusp).

 

Just Posted

Judgment reserved in Nakusp school sex trial

Trial concluded today with lawyer’s summations

Former teacher acquitted on two of four sex charges

Judge found no evidence to support sexual assault charges against Shanny McIvor

New Denver emergency ward to remain 24/7

Interior Health says it’s postponing changes to operating hours.

New Glade ferry enters testing phase

The Glade II will be able to carry heavier loads and will emit less greenhouse gases.

Smiles all around as province announces emergency ward funding

$2.1 million to go to much-needed upgrades

B.C. cougar kitten rescued after mother struck by vehicle

Conservation Officers find home for young kitten found dehydrated and frostbitten near Williams Lake

Women’s movement has come a long way since march on Washington: Activists

Vancouver one of several cities hosting event on anniversary of historic Women’s March on Washington

Liberals’ 2-year infrastructure plan set to take 5: documents

Government says 793 projects totalling $1.8 billion in federal funds have been granted extensions

Workers shouldn’t be used as ‘pawns’ in minimum wage fight: Wynne

Comments from Kathleen Wynne after demonstrators rallied outside Tim Hortons locations across Canada

John ‘Chick’ Webster, believed to be oldest living former NHL player, dies

Webster died Thursday at his home in Mattawa, Ont., where he had resided since 1969

World’s fastest log car made in B.C. sells for $350,000 US

Cedar Rocket auctioned off three times at Barrett-Jackson Co., netting $350,000 US for veterans

Bad timing: Shutdown spoils Trump’s one-year festivities

Trump spends day trying to hash out a deal with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer

RCMP nail alleged sex toy thief

Shop owner plays a role in arrest

Ice-cream-eating bear draws controversy

An Alberta Wildlife Park posted a video this week of one of their bears going through a Dairy Queen drive-through

Most Read