In 2015, Noah Strycker is attempting to become the first person to see 5,000 species of birds—about half of the avian species on Earth—in one calendar year! Noah is now a third of the way through 365 straight days of birding around the globe, with an itinerary covering 34 countries and all seven continents, on one continuous, all-out, global birding trip. To date he has covered Antarctica and most of South and Central America, tallying a fantastic 2,349 species. Noah is using eBird to keep track of his sightings and to help strategize during his quest, as well as to connect with many other birders as he travels. You can see his daily blog accounts on Birding Without Borders. He has been kind enough to write up a summary of his travels for us each month – you can find his notes from April here! In addition, Noah was sure to note that he’ll be in Oaxaca on the 9th for the Global Big Day! Where will you be?
This month’s eBirder of the month challenge, sponsored by Carl Zeiss Sports Optics, is all about the Global Big Day. As you may have seen or heard over the past couple weeks, May 9th is the inaugural Global Big Day, where eBird and the Cornell Lab are trying to record 4,000 species of birds in a single day, while raising $500,000 for global bird conservation. To encourage participation in this, our challenge this month revolves around submitting checklists towards the Global Big Day effort. The eBirder of the month will be drawn from eBirders who submit at least 5 complete checklists from May 9th. These checklists must be entered by May 12th in order to qualify for the drawing. Winners will be notified by the 10th of the following month.
So now you’ve read all about the Global Big Day effort this May 9th, and want to know more about how you can help and get others involved. We’re glad you’re interested, and we’ve got you covered! Here are some ways you can help get others interested and prepare to participate yourself.
Only 10 days remain until the Global Big Day on May 9th! This worldwide event to celebrate bird diversity and conservation has already gained participants in over 30 countries across the world, representing every continent aside from Antarctica. Enthusiastic eBirders have organized events to count birds and raise money from Taiwan to Tanzania, and Idaho to India. We’ve been keeping track of these countries, states, and provinces who have committed to participating on May 9th – you can see brief notes about each effort at this page. If you don’t see your region represented, let us know! And if you are looking for an example of coordination, check out the massive effort in Peru led by Corbidi and many other partners across the country.
Spring is in full swing in North America, and we’ll be featuring the BirdCast migration forecasts weekly to keep you up to date with what birds are arriving in your area. If you want to know what species of migrant birds will be showing up in your neck of the woods on any given week throughout the migration season, this is the place to look! These updates will also be posted on the eBird Facebook and Twitter pages – by following those pages you can get the same information delivered to your social media platform of choice. The BirdCast forecast highlights migrant species that you can expect to see in each of the regions covered: Upper Midwest and Northeast; Gulf Coast and Southeast; Great Plains; and West. Below are links to each of the regions, where you can see what to expect in your backyard or favorite birding spot! All of these forecasts are generated with your eBird data, and wouldn’t be possible without eBirders like you! Thank you!
eBird is an increasingly valuable data source for a variety of uses around the world. It provides open data access to thousands of researchers, academics, students, and conservationists each year, who use your observations to help answer questions about bird status and distribution. We’re always excited to hear about how eBird data are being used in these communities, specifically data use that relates to conservation. Have you used eBird to help make a conservation decision or to take conservation action? If so, please consider taking this short survey to tell us about it. The purpose of this survey is to help us understand how eBird data are being used, and help uncover conservation outcomes related to use of eBird data. We define ‘conservation outcomes’ as actions resulting from eBird data use that helped conserve birds, biodiversity, or key habitats. Examples could be protection or creation of habitat, better siting of a renewable energy project, listing/delisting of a species, or developing a set of management guidelines for a land owner. If in doubt, take the survey and tell us how you use eBird data. Collectively, this information is important for understanding eBird’s impact on bird conservation. The results of the study will be used for scholarly purposes only and may be published at scientific conferences and in scientific journals.
We first shared our idea of the Global Big Day with you 7 days ago. In this single week there has been a massive outpouring of worldwide support, with groups of birders and organizations planning some excellent contributions to the Global Big Day. We’re so excited to see all of these international birders coming on board that we wanted to share them with you. Perhaps it’ll even prompt you to get a group of people organized in your county, state, or country, wherever you are in the world! If you do plan a local or regional event, please let us know! You don’t need to commit to a full 24-hours of birding on May 9th: a short visit to the local pond or woodland or even a few minutes in your yard is still a meaningful contribution!
Spring has arrived in North America, and we’ll be featuring the BirdCast migration forecasts weekly to keep you up to date with what birds are arriving in your area. If you want to know what species of migrant birds will be showing up in your neck of the woods on any given week throughout the migration season, this is the place to look! These updates will also be posted on the eBird Facebook and Twitter pages – by following those pages you can get the same information delivered to your social media platform of choice. The BirdCast forecast highlights migrant species that you can expect to see in each of the regions covered: Upper Midwest and Northeast; Gulf Coast and Southeast; Great Plains; and West. Below are links to each of the regions, where you can see what to expect in your backyard or favorite birding spot! All of these forecasts are generated with your eBird data, and wouldn’t be possible without eBirders like you! Thank you!
Have you spent years yearning for the perfect clothing option to display your eBird pride? The right kind of hat to capture what birding, and eBirding, means to you? Well, your wait is over – we are excited to announce the eBird Store, a location where you can view, peruse, and purchase eBird items. The initial offering is a simple selection of apparel, with a few hats, t-shirts, and hoodies. Proceeds from these sales go directly to fund the eBird project as a whole, so in buying something from this store you are supporting eBird in addition to getting a great product!
For more than 30 years, Cornell’s Team Sapsucker has been doing Big Days to raise money for conservation. We’ve had some great times, from our awesome 294 species run in Texas to last year’s El Gigante that combined Arizona and California for 275 species. Other impressive totals and competitions we may prefer to forget (Andrew Farnsworth is leading Marshall Iliff 2 to 1 for most flat tires while driving on the Lab Big Days). The Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s Big Day efforts have also provided an ideal way for our student teams, the Redheads, to fundraise for student research as they participate in the World Series of Birding. Big Days are a big deal for us – raising more than a million dollars for conservation in the last three years alone.