Welcome to Virginia Breeding Bird Atlas 2

Birding in the 21st Century.

News and Features

Atlasing After Dark: an introduction to nocturnal surveys

Nighttime surveys are often the last step needed to ‘complete’ or finish an Atlas block.  This aspect of atlasing can seem a little challenging, so this article provides guidance for volunteers who are ready to start working on nighttime atlasing or for anyone interested in nocturnal species surveys.  If you take nothing else away, remember that your […]

American Woodcock, The Forest Species Few Have Seen

For many, the American Woodcock (Scolopax minor) remains a somewhat mysterious species and for good reason.  A forest-dwelling bird species doesn’t seem remarkable until we consider that the woodcock is in the shorebird family, Scolopacidae.  Suddenly, this species takes on a much more intriguing aspect.  Adding to it’s mystique, the American Woodcock is highly cryptic, displaying beautiful […]

Holiday birding can include breeding birds!

The season for Christmas Bird Counts has arrived! As we head into the end of 2016, birders thoughts may turn more and more toward the start of the 2017 breeding season.  These is not premature, because several of Virginia’s resident raptor species, or birds of prey, begin breeding far earlier than springtime.  In this article, we’ll focus on the Bald Eagle, […]

VABBA2 Season One: A Win for Virginia’s Birds and Citizen Science.

Temperatures continue to drop, as Autumn arrives and we wrap-up the first season of the second Virginia Breeding Bird Atlas (VABBA2).  Two things stand out about this summer’s field season. First, Virginia is an incredible place to survey birds.  Between the mountains and valleys, the rolling Piedmont, and the rich Coastal Plain, Atlas volunteers identified […]

Priority Species Database has arrived!

It has happened, Atlas Birders, the Priority Species database has arrived!  A quick reminder: the VABBA2 is first and foremost a conservation tool for assessing bird populations in Virginia.  To that end, an important goal of the Atlas project is to collect additional information on a subset of ‘Priority’ species.  Some of these are prioritized […]

Atlas Volunteer Story – Meet James Fox

Meet James Fox, a stellar Atlas volunteer whose story needed sharing amongst the larger birding community.  He is an awesome contributor for several reasons, but primarily because he not only dove in to the Atlas project this spring, but also launched a Virginia Big Year in January!  Despite his big year goals, James has taken the time […]

The migrants are coming! Atlas tips for late summer

As we slowly roll into the Fall migration season, we need to start using a little more care when applying breeding codes to our observations.  As migrants begin moving back through Virginia, it’s a good idea to consult the Breeding Guidelines Chart to see what species have entered the transition zone (when northern breeders start mixing with our […]

VABBA2 Volunteer of the Week – Dave Larsen!

Weekly Atlas volunteer story – Meet Dave Larsen! Dave has now confirmed 72 breeding species, contributing a tremendous amount of his time and effort to the VABBA2 project. Here is a little of his story… Dave started birding just after finishing graduate school in 1973. He was very active in his local bird club (Moriches […]

New Feature: Meet Virginia’s Atlas volunteers!

We’re starting a new series to highlight and thank the many awesome Atlas volunteers participating all around Virginia.  These folks have and are making significant contributions to the VABBA2 project, either through data collection, recruiting new volunteers, tutoring others, or all of the above!  The response of Virginia’s birding community to our call to action has […]

A Mid-Summers Update on the VA Breeding Bird Atlas

The summer is winging past and the summer solstice has already arrived!  Many mark this as the first true day of summer, but birders might argue that our summer begins when the Neotropical migratory birds return and set up shop for the breeding season.  When the trees are full of singing warblers and vireos, I always feel like summer […]