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Great Backyard Bird Count starts Friday, Feb. 17, 2017

February 15, 2017

Count birds for the Great Backyard Bird Count

Andy Byerly, Tucson AZ Cornell GBBC 2015 photos)

Gambel’s Quail couple
(Andy Byerly, Tucson AZ – Cornell GBBC 2016 photos)

Similar to Project FeederWatch, the Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC) helps scientists learn about the distribution and abundance of birds. But the GBBC works a little differently and takes place over only four days—from February 17 through 20, 2017.

For the GBBC, you count the number of individuals of each species you see during a single counting session, and you submit a checklist for each counting session (not a two-day tally like you do for FeederWatch). You can count in more than one location—just submit a separate checklist for each location each time you count. You can report the same birds to GBBC that you are reporting to Project FeederWatch as well as any other birds you see, even those birds flying overhead that don’t count for FeederWatch.

With the El Niño weather phenomenon warming Pacific waters to temperatures matching the highest ever recorded, participants in the 2017 GBBC may be in for a few surprises. Information gathered and reported online at will help scientists track changes in bird distribution, some of which may be traced to El Niño storms and unusual weather patterns.

Though rarities and out-of-range species are exciting, it’s important to keep track of more common birds, too. Many species around the world are in steep decline and tracking changes in distribution and numbers over time is vital to determine if conservation measures are needed. Everyone can play a role.

Learn more about how to take part in the Great Backyard Bird Count at The GBBC is a joint project of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the National Audubon Society with partner Bird Studies Canada and is made possible in part by sponsor Wild Birds Unlimited.

Project FeederWatch is a joint project of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and Bird Studies Canada.

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology is a nonprofit organization supported by friends and members. Our mission is to interpret and conserve the earth’s biological diversity through research, education, and citizen science focused on birds.

Bird Studies Canada is our country’s leading national charitable organization dedicated to bird research and conservation. Our mission is to conserve wild birds of Canada through sound sicience, on-the-ground actions, innovative partnerships, public engagement, and science based advocacy.



[Posted by Chuck “Rip ‘n’ Read” Almdale]




Project FeederWatch Contact Information

For U.S. participants:
Cornell Lab of Ornithology
Project FeederWatch
159 Sapsucker Woods Rd.,
Ithaca, NY 14850
(607) 254-2427

For Canadian participants:
Bird Studies Canada/Etudes d’Oiseaux Canada

P.O. Box 160,
Port Rowan, ON N0E 1M0
(519) 586-3531
Toll Free: 1-888-448-BIRD (2473)


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