After the bitter cold coupled with a thick blanket of fresh snow delayed our original count date, we were finally able to hit the trails and hope to see some birds. Twenty-one, Field and Feeder Counters, happily set out to get an accurate census of our many wintertime winged wonders!
On Count Day, ninety-six birds were sighted and comprised of Ruffed Grouse, Hairy Woodpecker, Gray Jay, Black-billed Magpie, Common Raven, Black-capped Chickadee, Boreal Chickadee, Red-breasted Nuthatch, Dark-eyed Junco, Pine Grosbeak, and an eagle sp.
Many thanks to our counters that covered over eight hours covering fifty-one miles both on foot and in a car, and at the feeder in an effort to contribute to the 123rd Audubon's Christmas Bird Count! Because of you, we have another year of valuable data on our winter birds of Kenny Lake!
WISE is excited to host the Audubon Christmas Bird Count (CBC) in Kenny Lake! What is the Christmas Bird Count? The Christmas Bird Count is a National Audubon Society program using only citizen science to collect its data. Between December 14th and January 5th, people across the US, Canada, and other Northern Hemisphere countries go out and count the early winter birds in their area. Some people walk, ski, or snowshoe a route, others count birds as they gather around a bird feeder at home. Counting happens between dawn and dusk of the given day, and then all the birds spotted in that area are tallied at the end. The Christmas Bird Count has been happening every year for over 100 years!
Why is the Christmas Bird Count Important? Recording data on bird populations is important not only to Audubon researchers, but to conservation biologists, wildlife agencies, and many others to track the health and populations of local birds. It is an important piece of the puzzle that tells us how species have changed or moved over the past century.
When is the Christmas Bird Count? This year's Official Count Day is Saturday, December 17th, 2022. Count Week will be Wednesday the 14th until Tuesday the 21st. Count week is a a notation of birds you've seen throughout that time period that maybe you wouldn't see on Count Day per se.
How can I participate? If you would like to participate in the 2022 bird count, please contact WISE. Look at the "Where to Count" list below and inform WISE where you would like to be this year. After dusk, all birders will gather together at Kenny Lake Library to celebrate, share stories and experiences, and gather forms to make the official tally.
What do I need to bring to go out counting? Your sense of adventure, of course! Additionally, depending on where you decide to go, you might need skis or snowshoes, perhaps a snowmobile to get there (we suggest doing most of your route by foot however so that you don't scare away any birds. You also can't hear any calls over the snowmobile!). DON'T FORGET YOUR FORMS! At the bottom of this page are the counter forms for field and feeder counters, make sure you print them out so you can mark down the birds as you go! At the end of the day on Saturday, Dec. 17th at 4:30 at the Kenny Lake Library, we'll be celebrating the CBC and collecting all forms, so make sure to bring them to the library with you!