Friday, November 11, 2016

Fwd: Save the Dates for the Next GBBC and Count Birds Right Now

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From: "Great Backyard Bird Count" <>
Date: Nov 11, 2016 9:16 AM
Subject: Save the Dates for the Next GBBC and Count Birds Right Now
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In this issue: Save the date for the next GBBC, tips on sparrow identification, and the winter finch forecast. Is this email not displaying correctly?
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GBBC eNewsletter 

November 2016

The Dark-eyed Junco was reported on the greatest number of checklists during the last count. Photo by Joan Tisdale, Michigan, 2016 GBBC.

Save the Dates for the 20th GBBC 

Greetings from the Great Backyard Bird Count team at Audubon, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, and Bird Studies Canada! We want to remind you to mark your calendars for the 20th GBBC, coming up February 17 through 20, 2017

Read a summary of the last count.

The Snow Goose was the most numerous species reported during the last count. Photo by Laura Frazier, West Virginia, 2016 GBBC
Pygmy Nuthatch by Kurt Countryman, Wyoming, 2015 GBBC.

Don't Wait, Count for FeederWatch Now!

Even before the GBBC arrives, we invite you to participate other fun citizen-science projects. You can start tomorrow, November 12, when Project FeederWatch kicks off its 30th anniversary across the U.S.and Canada. (But you can sign up after that date, too.) You'll count birds at your feeders at set intervals right through early April and report what you see online. GBBC sponsor Wild Birds Unlimited is also sponsoring this milestone season for FeederWatch and its BirdSpotter photo contest. You don't have to be a FeederWatch participant to enter and vote in the contest! Find out more and sign up below:


Song Sparrow by Dot Rambin, Louisiana, 2016 GBBC.

Study Up on Sparrows

For most of us, it's a struggle to distinguish all those "little brown jobs," otherwise known as sparrows. We have some tips and suggestions below for honing in on key markings that will make it a cinch to put a name to these zippy little birds.

Learn how to ID a Song Sparrow and find out why it's your best friend when it comes to identifying any of the other sparrow species in North America! 

* Key field markings to look for are highlighted on the GBBC tricky sparrows web page.

GBBC Slideshow

The slideshow for the next count is ready for you. It can be part of a public presentation to explain how the GBBC works. It can also be a good way to review how the count is done and how to enter your data. We also have a script to accompany the slideshow. Thanks for sharing it with others! 

Review our FAQs about the GBBC.

The next GBBC is
February 17-20, 2017

Common Redpoll by Melanie Palik, Ontario, 2016 GBBC.

Winter Finch Forecast

Irruptive finch species, such as the Common Redpoll, Pine Siskin, Pine Grosbeak, Red-breasted Nuthatch, and others make sporadic forays outside their normal winter ranges in Canada when pine cone seeds become scarce. Ron Pittaway's annual finch forecast shows where you might see some of these birds in the months ahead and during the GBBC. Read about it.
Evening Grosbeaks at the Ontario Bird Cam.

Ontario Bird Cam is Live!

Get a look at some of the birds that don't move south this winter by tuning in the Cornell Lab's live streaming Ontario Bird Cam in Manitouwadge, Ontario, thanks to sponsor Perky-Pet. Expect to see Evening Grosbeaks galore and an occasional Ruffed Grouse, along with cute redpolls. Watch the cam.
Where's that bird? Photo by Ann Foster, Florida, 2016 GBBC.

Tallying Judges' Choices

The judges have made their choices and the final results of the 2016 GBBC Photo Contest are being tallied. After we notify the winners and create web pages to display their work, we'll announce the results in the GBBC January newsletter to get you inspired for the next contest! In the meantime, check out a sampling of 2016 entries in the online photo gallery.

A Very Birdy Holiday

We have some great ideas for the bird watcher on your holiday list. Many of these gifts also help support education and conservation. 

Cornell Lab of Ornithology
Give the gift of knowledge with a new bird biology course and textbook or  relax with new bird coloring books.

Audubon Marketplace
Choose from a selection of beautiful bird-themed holiday cards, feeders, and other items sure to be a hit.

Bird Studies Canada
Your purchase of The Messenger blend coffee from Birds and Beans benefits birds, BSC, and your taste buds!

Visit Wild Birds Unlimited, a sponsor of the Great Backyard Bird Count!

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology is a nonprofit membership institution interpreting and conserving the earth's biological diversity through research, education, and citizen science focused on birds. Visit the Cornell Lab website at

Audubon is dedicated to protecting birds and other wildlife and the habitat that supports them. Our national network of community-based nature centers and chapters, scientific and educational programs, and advocacy on behalf of areas sustaining important bird populations, engage millions of people of all ages and backgrounds in conservation.

Bird Studies Canada is our country's leading national charitable organization dedicated to bird research and conservation. Our mission is to conserve wild birds of Canada through sound science, on-the-ground actions, innovative partnerships, public engagement, and science-based advocacy.

Cornell Lab of Ornithology
159 Sapsucker Woods Road
Ithaca, NY 14850
Call toll-free (800) 843-2473

National Audubon Society   
225 Varick Street
New York, NY 10014
(202) 600-7962

Bird Studies Canada
Box 160
Port Rowan, ON N0E 1M0 Canada
Call: (888) 448-2473 or (519) 586-3531

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