Annual Great Backyard Bird Count this Friday

St. Johns County Audubon Society Board member Ali Fulcher reminded the St. Johns County local news desk that the 13th Annual Great Backyard Bird Count is right around the corner.

The Great Backyard Bird Count 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 and in Hawaii. This year’s event will be held February 12th through February 15th, 2010.

The St. Johns County chapter boasts over 250 members together with participants from the Northeast Florida area, including St. Augustine, Ponte Vedra, and other locales. “We are a diverse group with varied interests and backgrounds,” Fulcher said. “We have banded together with common views involving birdwatching, education, conservation and protection of our fragile habitat.”

Anyone can take part in the Great Backyard Bird Count, from novice bird watchers to experts. Participants count birds for as little as 15 minutes (or as long as they wish) on one or more days of the event; then report their sightings online at

“Since the beginning of our existence in the early 1970’s,” Fulcher told us, “we have worked together developing goals which reflect the constantly evolving and ever-changing needs of our community.”

According to figures provided by the Audubon Society last year, participants turned in more than 93,600 checklists online, creating the continent’s largest instantaneous snapshot of bird populations ever recorded.

For more information on local Audubon Society news, visit their website at

The Great Backyard Bird Count is led by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and National Audubon Society with Canadian partner Bird Studies Canada and sponsorship from Wild Birds Unlimited.

Photo credit: © 2009 Historic City News contributed photograph by Christine Haines

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