The event, which runs from December 14, 2019, through January 5, 2020, is one of the world's longest-running wildlife census.

By Kelly Vaughan
December 12, 2019

The National Audubon Society is organizing its annual Christmas Bird Count for the 120th year in a row, which contributes necessary and impactful data for bird population research. This year, tens of thousands of volunteers are expected to participate in bird counts all across the Western Hemisphere, which begin on December 14, 2019, and runs through January 5, 2020. Volunteer birdwatchers follow designated 15-mile diameter circles and count each bird they see or hear within a 24-hour period. The data is a crucial way to inform ornithologists and conversation biologists about what specific efforts are needed to protect birds and their habitats.

Camilla Cerea/Audubon

"The Christmas Bird Count is a great tradition and opportunity for everyone to be a part of 120 years of ongoing community science," said Geoff LeBaron, Audubon's Christmas Bird Count director, who first started leading the community science effort in 1987. "Adding your observations to twelve decades of data helps scientists and conservationists discover trends that make our work more impactful. Participating in the Christmas Bird Count is a fun and meaningful way to spend a winter for anyone and everyone."

Related: A New Audubon Report Reveals That North America's Bird Species Face Extinction Threats Due to Climate Change

The annual holiday outdoors tradition is an important one for the science community in the wake of new studies that have covered declining bird populations and the threats of extinction from climate change. This year, Audubon is launching "CBC Live," which will allow users to upload a photo taken during the Christmas Bird Count and share a short anecdote across the hemisphere using Esri mapping software.

Anyone is invited to participate in the Christmas Bird Count and share their findings with Audubon; there is no fee to participate. Register with your local compiler here.

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