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25 years of bird observations reveal changes

PORT ROWAN - Backyard birdwatchers across Canada are invited to take part in the 25th season of Project Feeder Watch from Nov. 12 through April 6.

Each season, Feeder Watch increases in importance as indispensable monitoring tool for more than 100 species that winter in North America. Last year, over 2,500 Canadians and 11,000 Americans counted backyard birds; their observations help scientists better understand health and behavior – an important indicator species for the planet.

Each checklist by feeder watchers helps scientists at Bird Studies Canada (www.birdscanada.org) and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology (www.birds.cornell.edu) learn more about where birds are, how they are doing, and how to protect them.

Participating is a way for people to connect with nature, have fun, and help birds. They do not have to be an expert – the organizations send a poster of common birds, and help is a phone call or email away.

Participants choose how much time they want to give. They are asked to select a own day count period every two weeks, and count for as little as 15 minutes on one or both days.

Sightings are entered online at www.birdscanada.org/volunteer/pfw or reported on paper data forms and mailed at the end of the season.

Data from Feeder Watchers have helped scientists learn about changes in the distribution and abundance of feeder birds over time, expansions and contractions in their winter ranges, the spread of disease in bird populations, and the kinds of habitats and foods that attract birds.

For more information, visit www.birdscanada.org/volunteer/pfw, or contact the coordinator at 1-888-448-2473 or pfw@birdscanada.org. Bird Studies Canada is a national non-profit organization.

There are four ways to register for Project FeederWatch in Canada:

- Fill out the online form at www.birdscanada.org/volunteer/pfw;

- Email pfw@birdscanada.org;

- Write to P.O. Box 160, Port Rowan, Ontario N0E 1M0 (enclose a $35 cheque payable to Bird Studies Canada); or

- Call Bird Studies Canada toll-free at 1-888-448-2473.

 

September 23, 2011

 
 

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