Superbowl of Birding

Semi-Superbowl of Birding—January 30, 2021

Winter birding at Plum Island with Joppa Flats Education Center

Lead Corporate Sponsor

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Semi-Superbowl of Birding 2021

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Results from Previous Years

2020 Results >
2019 Results >
2018 Results >
2017 Results >

Winter is a wonderful time to bird in northeastern Massachusetts and southeastern New Hampshire, and we celebrate each year by sponsoring the Superbowl of Birding. This winter, due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, we have modified the scope and rules of this contest.

Instead of the Superbowl of Birding XVIII, this year we will run the Semi-Superbowl of Birding in Essex County, MA, and Rockingham County, NH. The event will take place on January 30, from 5:00 am-5:00 pm (snow date is January 31).

This remains a unique competition to find the greatest number of species and to earn the greatest number of points based on the rarity of the birds recorded. The Zeiss Joppa Cup is awarded to the team that collects the most points by the end of the specified 12-hour birding day. Strategy and planning are essential to win this competition.

The event consists of activities appropriate for all levels of birders. Dedicated birders can compete for several awards, including the Joppa Cup and Director's Cup, while anyone can compete for the Townie or Sitting Duck Awards.

Prize Categories

  • The Zeiss Joppa Cup: Greatest number of points
  • Director's Award: Greatest number of species
  • Essex County Award: Most points in Essex County
  • Rockingham County Award: Most points in Rockingham County
  • Parker River NWR Award: Most points on the refuge
  • Townie Award: Greatest number of species tallied from a single municipality
  • Sitting Duck Award: Most points compiled by a team birding within a 25-ft diameter circle

2020 Zeiss Joppa Cup winners "The Thrashers" © Susan Carlson
2020 winners "The Thrashers" © Susan Carlson

Results for Superbowl of Birding XVII (2020)

Joppa Flats is pleased to report another outstanding Superbowl of Birding. This year's event was held on January 25, with 17 teams and over 80 participants competing.

For the second year in a row, The Thrashers, captained by Davey Walters, won the Zeiss Joppa Cup with a remarkable total of 215 points! All of the team names, point, and species totals are listed below.

The total number of species recorded by all teams this year was a very respectable 129. That number includes 6 write-in species—Semipalmated Plover, Bullock's Oriole, Greater White-fronted Goose, House Wren, Eastern Phoebe, and Red-headed Woodpecker.

Full Species List

Team Results (alphabetical)




Team Name

Zeiss Joppa Cup 215 83 The Thrashers
Director's Cup 193 84 4th and Longspurs
Essex Co. Excels Award 104 58 First Eider Downies
Rockingham Co. Rocks Award 152 71 Incomplete Passerines
Parker River NWR Award 85 51 Saw What?
Townie Award 119 66 Twitchers Out of the Rye
Seekers Award 115 65 Fly-by-Nights
NewBies Award 68 46 The Bird Call Crew
Lifer Award 99 46 Gordon College Kingpishers
Amelia Wood (48) & Jennifer Noonan (48)
Fledgling Award  96 58 Indigo Puntings
completed at 1:14 pm

View Full results >