Occurrence Maps

We are excited to display the preliminary results of our modeling research using eBird data. These maps, which are called STEM (Spatio-Temporal Exploratory Model) maps, use eBird stationary and traveling count checklists that report all species. The location of each checklist is associated with remotely-sensed information on habitat, climate, human population, and demographics generating a suite of approximately 60 variables describing the environment where eBird searches take place. By relating these environmental variables to observed occurrences, STEM is used to make predictions at unsampled locations and times. Models are trained one species at a time. Following model training, the expected occurrence for that species is predicted on each of 52 days, one per week throughout 2009, at some 130,000 locations sampled throughout the conterminous US. This massive volume of information is then summarized on maps, which in many cases reveal novel information about the annual cycles of North American birds. These maps showcase the power of eBird – year-round, continental-scale monitoring of all species.

Obviously, these maps show only the Lower 48 United States. This is because the landscape and climatic variables used to model the bird occurrence are only available for the Lower 48. The Lab and its partners are engaged in ongoing research to find and incorporate satellite-sensed data that will be applicable worldwide and at least allow us to expand these maps to Canada, Central America, and South America. Each species map is displayed with a text overview of the broad-scale migration patterns, along with an interesting biological story to consider. Of course, every map has many more stories to tell, and we invite you to provide your comments and reactions on the eBird blog.

Black-throated Gray Warbler

Savannah Sparrow

Lesser Goldfinch


Northern Cardinal

Scarlet Tanager

Western Tanager


Western Meadowlark

Lazuli Bunting

Painted Bunting

Orchard Oriole

Black-throated Sparrow

Indigo Bunting

White-throated Sparrow

Harris’s Sparrow

Eastern Towhee

Clay-colored Sparrow

Grasshopper Sparrow

Common Yellowthroat

Kentucky Warbler

Blackpoll Warbler

Palm Warbler

Rose-breasted Grosbeak

Pine Warbler

Wood Thrush (fine scale)

Wood Thrush

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Yellow-throated Warbler

Prothonotary Warbler

Lapland Longspur

American Pipit

Willow Flycatcher

Mountain Bluebird

Townsend’s Solitaire

Eastern Bluebird

Pacific/Winter Wren

Rock Wren

Horned Lark

Clark’s Nutcracker

White-eyed Vireo

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher

Eastern Wood-Pewee

Olive-sided Flycatcher

Dusky Flycatcher

Hammond’s Flycatcher

Acadian Flycatcher

Brown-headed Nuthatch

Yellow-billed Cuckoo

Red-headed Woodpecker

Rough-legged Hawk

Swainson’s Hawk

Hermit Warbler

Louisiana Waterthrush

Yellow-throated Vireo

Cerulean Warbler

Upland Sandpiper