Local birders to take part in 114th Annual Christmas Bird Count

Fernie and Elkford naturalists will join thousands of volunteers throughout North America to add a new layer to over a century of data.

Common Redpolls can survive temperatures of -54 C. The Common Redpoll is a finch that breeds around the world in the lands that ring the Arctic Ocean.

Submitted

The annual Christmas Bird Count (CBC) is the longest-running Citizen Science survey in the world and will take place from December 14, 2013 to January 5, 2014.  Fernie, Elkford, Cranbrook, and Kimberley naturalists will join tens of thousands of volunteers throughout North America braving winter weather to add a new layer to over a century of data.  Individual Christmas bird counts occupying a single calendar day.

For many years, the Christmas Bird Count was organized at the continental scale by the National Audubon Society, and since 2000, Bird Studies Canada has partnered with Audubon to co-ordinate counts in Canada.  Scientists rely on the remarkable trend data of the CBC to better understand how birds and the environment are faring throughout North America, and what needs to be done to protect them.  CBC results are at the heart of numerous peer-reviewed scientific studies.

“Each CBC volunteer observer is an important contributor, helping to shape the overall direction of bird conservation,” says Dick Cannings, Bird Studies Canada’s Christmas Bird Count Coordinator.  “Bird Studies Canada and our U.S. partners at Audubon rely on data from the CBC database to monitor bird populations across North America.”

The Christmas Bird Count began over a century ago when 27 conservationists in 25 localities, led by scientist and writer Frank Chapman, changed the course of ornithological history.  On Christmas Day in 1900, the small group suggested an alternative to the “side hunt,” in which teams competed to see who could shoot the most game, including birds.  Instead, Chapman proposed that they identify, count, and record all the birds they saw.  Now Binocular Brigades often brave winter’s chill, ice, and snow to record changes in resident populations before spring migrants return.

Counts are often family or community traditions that make for fascinating stories.  Accuracy is assured by having new participants join an established group that includes at least one experienced birdwatcher.  Count volunteers follow specified routes through a designated 24-km diameter circle, or can arrange in advance to count the birds at home feeders inside the circle and submit the results to a designated compiler.

From feeder-watchers and field observers to count compilers and regional editors, everyone who takes part in the Christmas Bird Count does it for love of birds, the excitement of friendly competition and with the knowledge that their efforts are making a difference for science and bird conservation.

For more information about CBC participation and watching your feeders (please fill your feeders) in the East Kootenay please contact:

Fernie – Saturday, December 14 –Kevin Knight– 250-423-6562

Cranbrook – Saturday, December 28 –Greg Ross – 250-489-2566

Elkford – Sunday, December 29  –Ulrike Sliworsky  – 250-865-7744

Kimberley – Saturday, January 4 –Dianne Cooper  – 250-427-1921

 

Just Posted

No changes to Teck pollution limits, says Province

The B.C. Ministry of Environment has moved to quash fears mining pollution… Continue reading

Local volleyballers steal silver at provincials

Team entered tournament ranked 14th, finished second out of 56 teams

Structure fire displaces Sparwood family

Family uninjured. One pet lost. House remains uninhabitable due to severe damage.

Junior journalism program launches in Fernie

Young writers excited to step into world of journalism, work to be published in upcoming edition

New MRI unit increases access

Interior Health aims for 5100 exams in Cranbrook this year

What’s age got to do with it? B.C. couple with 45-year gap talks happy marriage

An Armstrong couple that has 45-year age gap began turning heads after being featured on show Extreme Love.

B.C. men challenge constitutionality of Canada’s secret no-fly list

Parvkar Singh Dulai says he received a “denial of boarding” notification under the no-fly program last May 17

Murder on B.C. property didn’t need to be disclosed before sale, court rules

Buyer had tried to break contract after learning a man with ties to crime had been murdered there

B.C.’s largest Vaisakhi festival target of threatening Facebook post: Surrey RCMP

Police say they are investigating the posts on Facebook, after local MLA forwarded screenshots

Pug life: B.C. town boasts waggish list of dog names

Freedom-of-information request lists most ‘pupular’ dog names registered in White Rock

VIDEO: Fish farming company launches $30-million vessel to treat salmon for sea lice in B.C. waters

Freshwater treatment an improvement but fish farms should be removed from sea, says conservationist

Singh says childhood abuse steeled him for scrutiny and stress of politics

He recounts the assaults for the first time in his book Love & Courage

Despite five extra weeks’ parental leave in Canada, dads still face stigma: survey

One reason people said dads don’t need leave is because they can just bond with their kids at weekend

Vintage bottles, magic cards, a 1969 Playboy: Quirky items found in historic B.C. buildings

Crews set aside some of the funkier pieces emerging from the construction rubble

Most Read