Mass Audubon Invites Public to "Focus on Feeders"
Annual Midwinter Backyard Bird Survey a Fun Way to Support Species
Michael P. O'Connor
LINCOLN, MA—Help keep bird populations strong and healthy throughout the coldest season and all year long by participating in Mass Audubon’s annual Focus on Feeders statewide winter bird count Saturday and Sunday, February 1-2.
The volunteer survey invites participants to list individual species and the greatest number of each seen at one time at feeders and in yards during that weekend. Record one count for each species seen then submit the simple report form to Mass Audubon. Participants’ names will be entered in a drawing to win one of several prizes.
Deadline for submission of results is Friday, February 28. Information on how to participate and submit reports can be found at www.massaudubon.org/focus.
Focus on Feeders is perfect for everyone who appreciates birdlife—first timers, veteran birders, and especially families. Participants not only learn and share information about species that visit their yards and feeders at this time of year, they contribute knowledge to more than 40 years of winter bird-feeder sighting records.
And since the data collected is more valuable the more people involved, participants should be sure to ask friends and neighbors to join the fun! In the 2013 count, a total of 108 species were reported by hundreds of observers, from Cape Cod to the Berkshires, the Merrimack River Valley to Martha’s Vineyard.
Focus on Feeders is a great example of the enjoyable and educational events, programs, and other opportunities to connect with nature Mass Audubon offers to its members and the public.
“This is the perfect citizen science project,” said Joan Walsh, Mass Audubon Director of Bird Monitoring. “People are already feeding and watching birds, and our annual counts from the project give us a window into changes in the wintering populations. Focus on Feeders helps us understand the changes in populations during this stressful time of year for birds.”
Mass Audubon protects 36,500 acres of land throughout Massachusetts, saving birds and other wildlife, and making nature accessible to all. As Massachusetts’ largest nature conservation nonprofit, we welcome more than a half million visitors a year to our wildlife sanctuaries and 20 nature centers. From inspiring hilltop views to breathtaking coastal landscapes, serene woods, and working farms, we believe in protecting our state’s natural treasures for wildlife and for all people—a vision shared in 1896 by our founders, two extraordinary Boston women. Today, Mass Audubon is a nationally recognized environmental education leader, offering thousands of camp, school, and adult programs that get over 225,000 kids and adults outdoors every year. With more than 125,000 members and supporters, we advocate on Beacon Hill and beyond, and conduct conservation research to preserve the natural heritage of our beautiful state for today’s and future generations. We welcome you to explore a nearby sanctuary, find inspiration, and get involved. Learn how at massaudubon.org.