Annual Great Backyard Bird Count — Citizen Science Project, Feb. 18-21, 2022

WATCH! COUNT! SHARE! Observe birds for 15 minutes (or more) on at least one of four days. Can you spare a little time for the birds?

Great Backyard Bird Count 2022 — 25th Anniversary

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology conducts an annual worldwide event, the Great Backyard Bird Count each February. It’s a collaboration with the National Audubon Society, Birds Canada (and Wild Birds Unlimited is a founding sponsor). This year in 2022, the count celebrates its 25th anniversary. The four day bird observation event begins on Friday, February 18th, 2022 and runs through the weekend into Monday, February 21, 2022, the last day of counting birds.

This citizen science project encourages the public around the world to take as little as 15 minutes on one day (or multiple days) to observe birds. Then submit the data about what species were sighted and number count by going online to website or using eBird app or Merlin app.

Observe Birds Anywhere (Not Just Your Backyard)

Count all the birds you see or hear within your planned time/location. While the event’s name includes “backyard,” you can count birds any place you choose.

Bird Migration Along The Atlantic Flyway

What is the “Atlantic Flyway?” The route stretches 3,000 miles from the Arctic tundra to the tropical Caribbean and South America. According to the Great Florida Birding Trail, Florida “sees a diversity of species during spring and fall migration, in additional to resident species that are in Florida year round.”

Amelia Island, FL is a great place for bird observation. Located on this barrier island in northeast Florida, Fort Clinch State Park is the northernmost gateway to the Great Florida Birding Trail. Over 250 species have been recorded at Fort Clinch.

Bird migration routes -- map of four North American flyways.
Bird migration routes, flyway map. (Image credit: U.S. Fish & Wildlife Refuge & Arctic National Wildlife Refuge)

During the Great Backyard Bird Count, people can also watch a “live map” of bird sightings during the event as they are entered, explore the 2022 birding data as it comes in.

“The Great Backyard Bird Count uses eBird, one of the world’s largest nature databases. It stores more than 100 million bird sightings contributed each year and is used by professionals for science and conservation. Contribute to eBird and become a citizen scientist.”

SOURCE: The Cornell Lab website
Watch Helpful Cornell Lab Webinar Below About 2022 Great Backyard Bird Count

(Short on time? Forward the video to skip intros and start video at 7:45 minutes in…)

One interesting discovery from analyzing bird count data from last year’s event was the timing of spring migration. Some bird species that commonly begin spring migration in late February and March were already on the move about one month ahead of schedule in some places. What insights will be revealed this year in 2022? Time will tell.

Please consider taking some time to watch, count, and share your bird observations this year. Bird photos can also be submitted during the event, along with count data. For more information, visit the Great Backyard Bird Count website.

Discover The World Of Birds

For those who can’t participate in this year’s count but would like to set a goal to learn more about birds in the coming year, the Cornell Lab’s All About Birds website is an extraordinary resource. As are the eBird website and birding apps. Technology continues to get better and better, teaching people about our feathered friends and helping the public participate in Citizen Science projects. ______

Note: This article was updated February 19, 2022