Get ready for some big winter birding! February 17th-20th (Friday to Monday) is the 20th annual Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC), a joint project of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the National Audubon Society with partner Bird Studies Canada. The GBBC takes a worldwide snapshot of bird populations by harnessing the power of birders in communities around the globe. During the count, information gathered by tens of thousands of volunteers is collected through the eBird platform. In fact, the launch of the GBBC in 1998 was one of the first demonstrations that the internet could be used to collect bird checklists, and this finding was instrumental to the creation of eBird in 2002. Since it began, the GBBC has demonstrated the potential of the worldwide birding community. Last year, GBBC participants in more than 130 countries counted 5,689 species of birds; more than half the known bird species in the world and 599 more species than the previous year. This year, there are more ways than ever to share information; during the count, you can enter the GBBC photo contest, or enjoy bird images pouring in from across the globe through eBird’s new photo and rich media library.
Join the global team!
Although eBird constantly collects bird information from around the world, the GBBC is an exciting opportunity to unite eBirders in documenting bird populations over a four day window. Everyone who submits a checklist this coming weekend will be part of a global team.
Top 10 countries by checklists submitted
|Country||Number of Checklists||Number of Species|
Data as of March 2, 2016
Top 10 Canadian Provinces by checklists submitted
* New provincial checklist record
|Province||Number of Checklists||Number of Species|
|Newfoundland & Labrador||205*||72|
|Prince Edward Island||88||56|
Data as of March 2, 2016
How to follow the GBBC stats this weekend
In order to see how well our global team is doing this weekend, check out the GBBC home page. Although tailored for the GBBC, this page has most of the same functionality as eBird. You can submit data here or in your favorite eBird portal—it all goes to the same place. The eBird outputs on the GBBC homepage will show data from the GBBC period only, so you can track the following:
Any one of the outputs above can be posted as a link on your blog, Facebook page, listserv, or social media account of choice. Make sure to check in with the eBird Live Submissions Map this weekend. The hottest times to watch this map are likely to be 4-9pm (Eastern Standard Time or GMT -5) on Sunday and Monday. Please enjoy this year’s GBBC and thank you for joining our team! Also, a big thanks to GBBC sponsor Wild Birds Unlimited.