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Nature and Environment

News about the health and beauty of the natural world that sustains us.

Earth Gauge Tip of the Week – Great Backyard Bird Count


The 2013 Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC) takes place from Friday, Feb. 15 through Monday, Feb. 18. Each year, volunteers across the country tally the birds they see in backyards, parks and natural areas. Last year, GBBC participants racked up more than 17 million observations and identified 623 species! Counting birds during GBBC helps scientists gain a snapshot of how winter bird populations are changing across North America. Some interesting trends from the 2012 count include:

Viewer Tip: Collecting all this data would be impossible without the help of thousands of volunteers. Anyone can participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count by tallying birds for at least 15 minutes on any day of the count. Simple instructions for counting and reporting birds are available at

. You can also find regional bird checklists, photo galleries, resources for kids and more!

GBBC is a joint project of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Audubon and Bird Studies Canada. Image of Snowy Owl courtesy of Oregon's Department of Fish and Wildlife.