Help the World by Counting the Birds in Your Backyard

You can easily help the world by counting the birds in your backyard.

An European Goldfinch perched on a branch.

You might be pleased to know that you can help the world by counting the birds in your backyard. The Backyard Bird Count was established in 1998, and this year it will take place between February 12 and February 15. If you are willing to take part to it next weekend, you can tremendously help scientists to keep track of the more common birds that share cities and towns with us.

The Great Backyard Bird Count or GBBC is organized every year. In 2015 alone about 140,000 people from one hundred countries participated and managed to record more than 5,000 species of birds. What is even more amazing is that they discovered two new breeds: Santa Marta screech-owl and milpo tapaculo.

The event is sponsored and organized by the National Audubon Society and the Lab of Ornithology from the University of Cornell. Everyone is urged to keep an eye out for any type of bird they can see in the proximity of their homes and note them down. This information has tremendous value since it helps ornithologists monitor the spread and population of diverse species, as well as their behavioral patterns.

The Great Backyard Bird Count was created eighteen years ago and is at the moment the longest project driven by citizens to take place worldwide. The tasks are simple, but the information is invaluable. The event is also a nice way of getting together experts and amateurs.

Participants are encouraged to look for birds for about fifteen minutes and note down or snap pictures of all winged creatures they see. While most people usually find common birds such as goldfinches, northern cardinals or blue jays, you might be in luck and witness a rarity on the sky, or even discover an entire new species! The longer you gaze into the sky or the trees, the more likely you are to find something completely unique, not to mention the important information you can gather.

Ornithologists are interested in the size, color and behavior of the birds, because with these they can understand their lifestyle and help them survive or even save endangered species from extinction. With the recent changes in climate and environment many bird species have been sighted in completely out-of-place locations.

If you help the world by counting the birds in your backyard during this unique event that takes place next weekend, you are making a huge contribution to the planet we inhabit.

Image Source: Bird Guides