Left, speaker Rick Davis, stands beside an orchid design arrangement by Pansy Bryan. Right, Bird Chairwoman Maryann Rettino.

Contributed Photo

Left, speaker Rick Davis, stands beside an orchid design arrangement by Pansy Bryan. Right, Bird Chairwoman Maryann Rettino.

Garden Club prepares for 'Backyard Count'

By –From Contributed Reports

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At the Edgecombe Garden Club’s January meeting at the Fountains of the Albemarle, speaker Ricky Davis really prepared members for the “2014 Great Backyard Count” as he elaborated on pictures of birds he had taken in his slide presentation.

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. Find the GBBC website at http://www.birdsource.org/gbbc.

This count takes place four days, Feb. 14-17. Bird watchers of all ages count birds anywhere in the world. The Edgecombe Garden Club wants more in our area to participate, too!

Just count 15 minutes one day or for long as you like each day of the event. Then tally the number of birds of each species you saw and enter these numbers on the GBBC website checklist.

New participants must set up a free GBBC account to submit your checklists. Click “Submit Your Bird Checklist” at the top of the page or see “How to Participate” for more details.

On the Internet find what is reported. Send bird photographs taken for the GBBC photo contest. They are posted in the online photo gallery.

Scientists learn a lot knowing where birds are. No single scientist or team of scientists could document and understand the complex distribution and movements of so many species in a short time.

Along with observations from other citizen-science projects such as the Christmas Bird Count, Project FeederWatch, and eBird, scientists get the “big picture” of what is happening to bird populations.

The longer these data are collected, the more meaningful they become in helping scientists investigate questions like: (1) How will the weather influence bird populations? (2) Where are winter finches and other species that appear in large numbers during some years but not others? (3) How will the timing of birds’ migrations compare with past years? (4) How are bird diseases, such as West Nile virus, affecting birds in different regions? (5) What kinds of differences in bird diversity are in cities versus suburban, rural, and natural areas? Speaker Ricky Davis’s impressive bird credentials began when he earned a Biology degree at the University of NC Wilmington. His main interests have been studying the distribution of NC’s birds and their migrations. For 15 years he was a Regional Editor for the journal “North American Birds,” covering the Southern Atlantic Region which includes the Carolinas and Georgia. He is a junior author for the publication “Birds of the Carolinas (Chapel Hill Press)”.

He conducts several programs and field trips dealing with birds, dragonflies, and photography for the Rocky Mount Children’s Museum and Science Center. Currently, he is the NC Editor for the “Audubon Christmas Bird Counts” and the NC Coordinator for the “USGS Breeding Bird Survey.”

He is a Life Member of the Carolina Bird Club since 1972. Since its inception, he has been on its NC Bird Records Committee. He leads field trips for the Carolina Bird Club and multiple outings during the annual “Wings over Water Birding and Nature Festival” held each autumn on the Outer Banks.


Bad Link in article

Looks like the correct one is here: http://www.birdsource.org/gbbc

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