Thursday, February 20, 2014

Great Backyard Bird Count 2014 Bigger Than Ever

Last weekend, people around the world counted birds in their backyards, local parks, neighborhoods and wildlife areas. India turned out a large number of people submitting this year. In total, 132,656 observation lists have been submitted as of today. The last day to submit lists from the Feb. 14-17 Great Backyard Bird Count is Feb. 28th.

It was fascinating to watch the world map on the GBBC website as lists were turned in and their location marked. As I watched, someone in Australia posted their list. There were observers in Iceland, several lists from New Zealand, multiple locations in Africa; people all over the world providing science with a snapshot of bird numbers and activity. Check out the GBBC map.

Malibu Lagoon State Park
I went out to Malibu Lagoon one morning and to Santa Barbara the next. It was a beautiful weekend for spending time outside. Several of us saw a peregrine falcon at Malibu Lagoon and the best sighting at the estuary wildlife refuge in Santa Barbara was two pairs of greater scaups.

My favorite birds this weekend, however, were in my own backyard. The Allen's hummingbird babies are feathering out. It won't be long before they start trying out their wings.

We found their nest in January.

And this weekend I spotted a second hummingbird nest. This female Allen's is sitting on two white eggs. The warm weather in California may bring us a series of nesting hummingbirds this year.

Allen's hummingbird on nest

Now that you've counted birds for the Great Backyard Bird Count, think about FeederWatch or eBird
  • FeederWatch: Count birds in your backyard two consecutive days every week or bi-weekly, Nov. - April.
  • eBird: Count birds where and whenever you see them and enter your lists in the largest citizen scientist database in the world.

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