The New Zealand Bird Atlas is currently underway!

By NZ Bird Atlas Team November 27, 2019
NZ Bird Atlas

The New Zealand Bird Atlas began on the 1st of June 2019, and runs for 5 years until June 2024. It is the third Birds NZ Atlas, and the first digital NZ Atlas!

Anyone who is familiar with New Zealand’s bird species is welcome to take part.  All you need to do is register as an eBird user, and begin collecting and submitting complete bird checklists to the New Zealand Bird Atlas eBird portal from the 1st June, 2019 to the 1st June 2024 – it’s that easy! We recommend bookmarking the NZ Bird Atlas portal and submitting all your lists after 1st June 2019 to that portal rather than this one. Important! Any lists submitted to the global or NZ portals won’t show up in the Atlas Effort Map. So it’s vital you ensure you submit to the NZ Atlas eBird portal online and via your phone by setting the portal to NZ Bird Atlas in the settings of the eBird app. The diagram below shows how the portals fit in with each other, almost like Russian dolls.

Diagram of how each eBird portal fits within each other

The aim of the New Zealand Bird Atlas is to map the distribution of all of New Zealand’s bird species across the entire country over the five year period.  To achieve this, we’ll need the help of thousands of birders like yourself, from around the country to record the presence of every bird species encountered in over 3200 10 x 10 km grid squares across New Zealand. See how the Atlas is progressing using the Atlas Effort Map.

With up to 80% of New Zealand’s native land birds now at risk of extinction, there’s an urgent need to develop a detailed understanding of exactly where New Zealand’s birds persist, where they’re doing well, and where they’re declining, so that both local and central government agencies and non-government organisations can target their conservation resources to where they’re most urgently needed.

The New Zealand Bird Atlas is designed to do just this – to create a detailed, nationwide picture of the current distribution of our unique birds, and combined with two previous Atlas projects run by birds New Zealand in 1969-1979 and 1999-2004, to create a unique picture of how the distribution of New Zealand’s birds has been changing over the past 45 years.

The New Zealand Bird Atlas is being run by Birds New Zealand, in collaboration with Wildlife Management International Ltd and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, and with the generous financial support of Goodness Kitchen. To find out more, and to access a range of Atlas resources including tutorial videos and more, visit the ‘About’ or ‘How to’ sections of the Atlas eBird portal.

If you have any questions at all, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.

We look forward to seeing you out there!