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How Birders Can Contribute to Conservation: The Audubon Society’s Christmas Bird Count


Several conservation organizations have hit upon simple ways to turn the observations of casual birders into valuable conservation data.  If you enjoy birding, why not also ensure that your hobby helps to preserve your favorite creatures….it really is very simple to become involved.  As one who has been involved in this and related programs for years, I can assure you that it is quite gratifying to know that your efforts will be put to practical use in helping to conserve local birds.  Enjoy!

The Christmas Bird Count

At 109 years old, the National Audubon Society’s Christmas Bird Count is the nation’s longest-running wildlife census.  Each year tens of thousands of “citizen scientists” count birds in their neighborhoods and submit their observations to the Audubon Society for use in assessing avian health and population trends.  This information has also helped to support the passage of protective legislation for the black duck and several other species, and has been used to document the spread of West Nile Virus and other health hazards.

Bird count data has also been incorporated into two government reports, both of which have direct bearing on future conservation initiatives.  Common Birds in Decline has established that populations of many formerly abundant birds have plunged by 65-80% over the past 40 years, while Watchlist 2007 documents 178 mainland and 39 Hawaiian bird species in need of immediate protection.

You can learn how to become involved at:


To help make sure that there are plenty of birds around to count, please check out our wild bird foods, feeders and other supplies.


About Frank Indiviglio

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I believe that I was born with an intense interest in animals, as neither I nor any of my family can recall a time when I was not fascinated by creatures large and small. One might imagine this to be an unfortunate set of circumstances for a person born and raised in the Bronx, but, in actuality, quite the opposite was true. Most importantly, my family encouraged both my interest and the extensive menagerie that sprung from it. My mother and grandmother somehow found ways to cope with the skunks, flying squirrels, octopus, caimans and countless other odd creatures that routinely arrived un-announced at our front door. Assisting in hand-feeding hatchling praying mantises and in eradicating hoards of mosquitoes (I once thought I had discovered “fresh-water brine shrimp” and stocked my tanks with thousands of mosquito larvae!) became second nature to them. My mother went on to become a serious naturalist, and has helped thousands learn about wildlife in her 16 years as a volunteer at the Bronx Zoo. My grandfather actively conspired in my zoo-buildings efforts, regularly appearing with chipmunks, boa constrictors, turtles rescued from the Fulton Fish Market and, especially, unusual marine creatures. It was his passion for seahorses that led me to write a book about them years later. Thank you very much, for a complete biography of my experience click here.
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