White Rock Christmas Bird Count co-ordinator Gareth Pugh wants to clear the air on just what it takes to participate in the annual study that helps track the health of the winter bird population.
To be blunt: very little.
“You don’t have to be a wizard birder… to join in,” Pugh said Friday.
“There’s a bit of a misconception out there that the Christmas Bird Count is for experts.”
Set for Dec. 29, this year’s count is part of an annual effort to track the health of winter bird populations. Hundreds take place across the country, sponsored by the Audubon Society, but conducted by local naturalists clubs.
While there are avid birders who regularly participate in the count, the fact is equally valuable information can be collected by just about anyone interested in getting involved, said Pugh – even those who prefer to stay inside where it’s warm.
“People can take part from their homes by observing the birds at some point in the day that visit their feeders and reporting their count,” a news release states.
“This part of the count is especially important as large numbers of birds can always be found where there are feeders, and rare species often show up at feeders.”
Pugh said the more people that join in the count, the better the results.
The local area to be surveyed – with a diameter of 24 kilometres – is split into nine sections. Participants can either go out with a team to record birds seen, or, stay at home and record the birds spotted in their yard.
Results are then shared with Pugh.
To get involved, or for more information, Pugh may be reached at 604-576-6831 or firstname.lastname@example.org