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Butterbredt Spring Christmas Count December 17th

November 30, 2021

SMBAS has been hosting the Butterbredt Spring Christmas Count for at least 40 years. It was started by the late Keith Axelson who was so taken by the California Outback that he moved there from here when he retired. That is why a seaside Audubon chapter has a count circle 3 hours away in the mountains north of Mojave.

If you are not familiar with Christmas Counts, just Google “Audubon Christmas Count”. Interested? It’s a day of birding and Citizen Science – having fun and doing good. However, it’s not a walk in the park. We will go regardless of temperature (can be below freezing at times). Extreme bad weather would mean postponing until the 21st or 22nd. It’s a long drive there and back. One needs to be a decent birder, able to identify most species and count them. You need a car with adequate ground clearance (no Porsches) but 4WD is not needed unless there is lots of snow (very unusual). Generally speaking you would need to leave Santa Monica around 5:00 a.m. and if you stay all day, leave the count circle around 3 p.m. And, in this time of Covid, you need to be with people who have been vaccinated. In this count this year, we don’t have enough people to have an “expert” to accompany you. We can give you instructions and maps to guide you, and answer any questions, but you will be on your own.

I’m guessing all that narrows the field somewhat. But never mind. I mean, you could be doing the Nome, Alaska count. That means sitting in your house/shelter and occasionally going outside to see if any more ravens have showed up. The Butterbredt count is lots more fun than that.

The date is Friday, December 17th. Anyone interested should contact me (Chuck Bragg) via email (see the heavily disguised email address on the Contacts page of this blog).

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