The GBBC is a joint product of The Cornell Lab of Ornithology, The Audubon Society, and The Bird Studies in Canada.
The Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC) is an annual four-day event that engages bird watchers of all ages in counting birds to create a real-time snapshot of where the birds are across the continent. Anyone can participate, from beginning bird watchers to experts. It takes as little as 15 minutes on one day, or you can count for as long as you like each day of the event. It’s free, fun, and easy—and it helps the birds.
The 2012 GBBC will take place Friday, February 17, through Monday, February 20. Join your fellow bird watchers!
This will be our first year participating. I’m a little nervous because I haven’t really seen any birds lately. We have a nice nature park next to us; I figured we could take a break and hunt for birds. Camera in hand of course.
Resources for GBBC
The best place to find information about the GBBC is their official website: www.birdsource.org/gbbc.
On the front page there is a link to the zip code finder. This will give you a list of birds you might see in your area in February.
This was part of the list returned for our area. Now I can study the list and compare it with birds from my favorite bird guide book National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Birds, Western Region.
A favorite of birdwatchers (especially those who prefer photographs to illustrations), this field guide, revised for 2000, accounts for the 544 bird species that live in the region west of the Great Plains. The clearly printed color photographs capture birds at rest and in flight; preceded by black-and-white silhouettes, the plates are organized by visually based, intuitive categories–”hawk-like birds,” “pigeon-like birds,” and “perching birds,” for example–that make on-the-fly identification a fairly simple matter. The images are matched by clearly written text that describes a given bird, gives an approximation of its voice, and details its habitat, range, nests, and behavior. Sized to fit in a jacket or backpack pocket, this is a valuable companion for any birding outing in the region. –Gregory McNamee
Also available to download: Android or iPad/iPhone/iPod!
Birding Sites around Portland, Oregon
Portland Metro has several wildlife refuges for bird watching in addition to many neighborhood parks; the largest being Washington Park in the West Hills. Any of these places would be a great place to start your bird count.
- Audubon Society of Portland: Fantastic source of information for birding in our area. Private society organized in 1929 (Memberships start at $25). 5151 NW Cornell Road, Portland. Wildlife care center & nature store available.
- Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge: Managed by Portland Parks Department. Nature Trails & wetlands. Open to biking & hiking. SE 7th Avenue & Sellwood Blvd, Portland.
- Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge: Private volunteer organization. Includes a visitor center open Tuesday to Sunday 10am – 4pm. Trails & Observation areas open daily dawn to dusk. 19255 SW Pacific Highway, Sherwood. No Pets Allowed.
- Jackson Bottom Wetlands: 725-acres wildlife preserve. Managed by Hillsboro Parks & Recreation Department. Trails, observation areas and visitor center. Monday to Sunday from 10am-4pm. 2600 SW Hillsboro Hwy, Hillsboro. NO DOGS or BICYCLES PERMITTED.
- Sauvie Island Wildlife Area: Hunting, fishing, birdwatching, hiking, picnicking, trapshooting, photography, dog training and canoeing. 18330 NW Sauvie Island Road. Sauvie Island is worth the drive up Highway 30. We frequented there during the summer when we lived in Scappoose for fresh fruits and vegetables.Note: A parking permit is required for the Sauvie Island Wildlife Area and can be purchased at ODFW License vendors, online at ODFW’s website and at the Sauvie Island ODFW office, Monday through Friday during office hours.
- Washington Park: Home of the Portland Children’s Museum, Oregon Zoo, Portland Japanese Garden, World Forestry Discovery Museum, International Rose Test Garden and Hoyt Arboretum. Plenty of trails & trees to search for birds!
Notebooking/Lapbooking Resources for GBBC
We will using a combination of notebook pages to record our observations. Here are some of the resources we have bookmarked:
- GBBC for Kids: online games
- Barb’s Handbook of Nature Study blog: Anything nature…this is the site!
- Bird Observation chart by Notebooking Fairy. Free Download.
- Backyard Birds Lap n Note by Homeschool Share. Free Download.
- Notebooking Pages North American Birds Sample. I recommend you purchase her Nature Study notebook pages set…or better yet, get the Treasury Membership! I use this resource weekly.
Will you participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count of 2012?
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