Virginians Invited to Participate in The Great Backyard Bird Count

Identify the birds around you while contributing to science in the annual Great Backyard Bird Count. Each year in February, millions of people count the variety of birds that can be seen and heard in their own backyards over a four-day period. You are invited to participate in the bird count that takes place Feb. 16-19, 2024.

Downy Woodpecker

The Great Backyard Bird Count brings people from all over the world together to connect and share their love of birds while learning about migration patterns. These observations help scientists better understand global bird populations before one of their annual migrations.

All you need to do is log the birds that you count in a 15-minute period on at least one of the four days of the event. You can download the Merlin Bird ID app to help identify the birds in your area or you can use the eBird Mobile app to enter your bird sightings.

If your location isn’t the best for birding you may want to consider a Virginia State Park.

Great Blue Heron

“Virginia State Parks offer a unique and scenic location to view various birds this time of the year,” Powhatan State Park Manager Amelia Hulth said. “Our park is perfect for anyone to enjoy birdwatching alone or with friends and family. On Saturday, Feb. 17, we will offer a fun ranger-led activity where guests will discover more about our feathered friends that can be found in the park or in their backyard. For the second part of the program, we’ll use peanut butter or vegetable shortening, sweet gum balls, sticks and pinecones to make feeders that provide tasty treats for our winged friends. You can hang the feeder in your backyard and see who comes to visit.”

Those interested in participating in this year’s bird count can find an event or related program at one of several participating parks. State parks that are having an event include:

Your participation matters and your bird count contributes to a global study that helps protect bird populations all over the world. The Great Backyard Bird Count is a great way to connect with birds, nature and each other.

Visit www.virginiastateparks.gov for more information about upcoming events at a State Park.

Virginia State Parks are managed by the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation. For more information about Virginia State Parks’ activities and amenities or to reserve one of the more than 1,800 campsites or 300 climate-controlled cabins, call the Virginia State Parks Reservation Center at 800-933-PARK or visit virginiastateparks.gov.

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