For much of India October is one of the most exciting months – with migrants such as waders and a few passerines starting to arrive in August and through September, it is not until October when numbers and variety truly increase. Not many ducks, apart from mainly small numbers of Garganey and Shoveler, are present at the start of the month, but by the end most species have arrived across their wintering areas. It’s therefore a great time to be out in the field regularly, and ideal for participating in the first of the two major new challenges we announced recently…
Patch Birding Challenge
One of the best ways to improve your birding skills, and gain knowledge both personally and to add to our collective understanding of Indian birds, is to pay regular birding visits to a convenient site. This is what our recent series of articles about “patch birding” describes. If it interests you then do join in the Patch Birding Challenge – exciting to take part in, and with some great prizes.
Over 4 million observations of 1,200 species from 40,000 locations by 6,000 observers – that’s a lot of effort and a lot of data you’ve all helped produce. But what can we do with this? Does it help answer some intriguing questions about birds and birding in India? That’s where you can get involved with the eBird India Data Challenge, by posing a question you’d like answered, and/or crunching the data to come up with some interesting analysis. And did we mention exciting prizes…?
eBird Mobile App Update
October is still a month that sees plenty of breeding activity, with many small birds feeding recently fledged young, and many raising second broods. (What species do this? How many broods can some species have in a year? Good questions that your patch birding might help answer!) Helpfully the eBird mobile app has recently been updated to allow entry of breeding codes in the field, so please do make sure you use this feature as it will soon help us build up knowledge of relatively poorly known breeding patterns of birds in India.
Other Events and Challenges
The India challenge for this month is another incentive to get out in the field, as its focus is on hours spent birding, whilst the global challenge is to get you using the mobile app.