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Bird Counts - Summer and Winter

For more than 100 years, birders of all levels joined together to count bird species all over the United States and abroard. Santa Clara Valley Audubon Society sponsors several of these counts each year, both at Christmas and in early summer. We need help from birders of all abilities so we can continue collecting this important data.

Join other counts such as the Great Backyard Bird Count in February and Project FeederWatch from November through early April.

Summer Bird Count

SCVAS sponsors a bird count each year near the beginning of June, which covers a portion of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties (same area as the Palo Alto Christmas Bird Count). As well as counting birds, groups of observers also record any signs of breeding, such as mating, nest building, or feeding of fledged young. These counts are important in documenting trends of breeding activity. Birders of all levels are encouraged to participate, and a "countdown" dinner is held the same evening.

Palo Alto - Saturday, June 7, 2014
Count birds in areas from from Skyline Drive to the bay in a circle that is centered near Stanford University. In addition to the popular birding locales in the circle, it also covers many urban areas of Santa Clara and San Mateo counties. Scheduled on the first Saturday in June. Please contact our Programs Coordinator at (408) 252-3740 or by email.

Winter Christmas Bird Counts (CBC)

Each December we participate in several Christmas Bird Counts (CBC) sponsored by the National Audubon Society. Organizations use data collected in this long-running wildlife census to assess the health of bird populations and to help guide conservation action. Read about how the data are used and about the histories of our counts.

Yellow-rumped Warbler by Tom Grey
Yellow-rumped Warbler © Tom Grey

Each of our four predefined count circles are divided into sectors by the count leader and teams are assigned to count birds in each sector. Counters with less experience are teamed with those with more experienced. Even if beginning birders can't identify every bird, they provide important "extra eyes" in finding birds. A "countdown" dinner (donations to cover the food are gladly accepted!) is held on the evening of the count, where groups share their results and tell tales of the day.

If you'd like to help, please contact the count leader listed below at least two-weeks before the count day or contact us.

Publication of Results

Since 2012, National Audubon Society does not charge the small participant fee to publish CBC results. Instead they now publish all CBC results online.

San Jose - Sunday, December 15, 2013
This is our longest running count. It offers many different habitats to count: shorline, woodlands, lake-side, riparian, and urban parks in areas of San Jose, Sunnyvale, Santa Clara, and Alviso. Please contact Kirsten Holmquist before December 10 at (408) 747-0988 or email her at [email protected]

San Jose count form spare copies (these are contained in the packet that will be distributed):
Uncommon or Rare Species Report
Sector Summary
Party Summary
Party Hours and Miles Worksheet

Palo Alto - Monday, December 16, 2013
Count birds in areas from from Skyline Drive to the bay in a circle that is centered near Stanford University. In addition to the popular birding locales in the circle, it also covers many urban areas of Santa Clara and San Mateo counties. Many habitats are covered. Please contact Jack Cole at (408) 996-0434 or email him at [email protected]

Palo Alto participants should submit the completed copy of the Palo Alto Christmas Bird Census checklist sent to them by their regional coordinator that has the proper information filled out at the top.

Palo Alto count forms:
Rare bird documentation form
Census checklist (Participants should submit the copy of the bird checklist sent to them by their region coordinator. If you have to use this blank copy, you MUST first fill out the top line of each page with information obtained from your coordinator.)

Calero-Morgan Hill - Saturday, December 28, 2013
This is the only count covering southern Santa Clara County. The circle includes the Diablo Range foothills to portions of the Santa Cruz Mountains. Some specific areas of interest include Coyote Creek (including Ogier Ponds), Almaden Lake Park, Quicksilver County Park, Guadalupe Oak Grove Park, Coyote Valley, and many reservoirs. Please contact Ann Verdi at (408) 266-5108 or email her at [email protected]

Mount Hamilton - Monday, December 30, 2013
This scenic count circle includes Mount Hamilton and the San Antonio Valley. Interested counters should contact Bob Hirt at (408) 821-2732.

 

Last modified September 2013

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