Christmas Bird Count at Red Rock Canyon State Park, Jan. 3
December 21, 2019
Come to Red Rock Canyon State Park on Friday, Jan. 3 to help look for birds as part of the Audubon Society’s 120th Christmas Bird Count! The annual count is the longest running Citizen Science survey in the world. Since the first count in 1900, the Christmas Bird Count has provided critical data on population trends.
Prior to the turn of the century, people engaged in a holiday tradition known as the Christmas “Side Hunt” where they would choose sides and go afield with their gun, and whoever brought in the biggest pile of feathered (and furred) quarry won. Around the turn of the 20th century, observers and scientists were just beginning to become concerned about declining bird populations, so ornithologist Frank Chapman, an early officer in the then budding Audubon Society, proposed a new holiday tradition – a “Christmas Bird Census” – that would count birds in the holidays rather than hunt them.
Beginner to expert birders are all welcome. Please pre-register by emailing Jean.Rhyne@parks.ca.gov. Bring bird books if you have them, layered clothing, binoculars, shoes that can get muddy, water and snacks. Also, 4-wheel drive vehicles are appreciated for carpooling to remote sites and there will be nearby count areas accessible to anyone. Meet at the Red Rock Canyon State Park Visitor Center, 37749 Abbott Dr., Cantil on Friday, Jan. 3 at 8 a.m. for registration and orientation. Count areas will be determined at check-in. “Early birds” can also meet at 7 a.m. for birding at Red Rooster (email to RSVP).
For more information about the Audubon Christmas Bird Count, visit http://www.ChristmasBirdCount.org.