The Great Backyard Bird Count is almost here!

snowy-egret

Image source: Dendroica cerulea on Flickr

Here at QueensNYC, we have a certain fascination with birds – we love keeping up with the Jamaica Bay Osprey, and yesterday we told you about all the amazing waterfowl hanging out around Jamaica Bay. Astoria Park has had its own hawk family for years. A peacock escaped in Kew Gardens Hills past summer, too. And Breezy Point, before it was known as home to a dreadful fire during Hurricane Sandy, had quite the reputation as a place for serious birding. In short, Queens is an amazing place for those interested in birds.

This is why we think the borough will be a prime spot for the annual Great Backyard Bird Count, “a census of birds conducted every year by bird-lovers at sites across the country.” Yes, it’s a nationwide event, and this year for the first time it will be a worldwide survey, too – it’s a joint project of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Bird Studies Canada, and the National Audubon Society. The date of the GBBC is Saturday, February 16 and will take place in Queens at the Queens Botanical Garden (GMAP) at 10:30am that day.

Here is more info and how to participate:

Why count birds in midwinter? The GBBC provides important data on how winter snowfall and temperatures affect bird populations, migration patterns and differences in bird diversity in various regions. Bird species and numbers will be added to a database that will allow scientists to track migrations and populations and then make informed conservation decisions.

You can count birds anywhere for as little as 15 minutes, anytime during the weekend, or you can join us and be surprised at how many species we are able to see in the middle of winter. Over 50 species of birds have been spotted at Queens Botanical Garden including Red-tailed Hawks, American Robins, and Ring-necked Pheasants. Led by QBG staffer and birding enthusiast Shari Romar, this family-friendly counting event will be half nature walk and half scavenger hunt, and the results of the count will be added to those submitted from across the continent.

This event is free but registration is required. For more information or to register for the Great Backyard Bird Count, call (718) 886-3800, ext. 213 or email Shari Romar at sromar@queensbotanical.org. For more information about the Great Backyard Bird Count, please visit http://www.birdsource.org/gbbc

And maybe when you’re done, head to nearby Flushing for some tasty dumplings.

The Great Backyard Bird Count [QNYC]