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2015 GREAT BACKYARD BIRD COUNT

Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Cornell University
Photograph Michelle Black, Ohio


The numbers are in and it is another record year for birders and bird counts in the 2015 Great Backyard Bird Count.

In North America, California sits atop the leader board with the most checklists submitted and the greatest number of species, followed by Pennsylvania and New York. Ontario, Canada, is in the Top 10 for the second year in a row, nudging past Ohio and Georgia. Ontario sent in the highest number of checklists in Canada (4,218) but British Columbia reported the highest number of species (197).

A sampling of species found by intrepid counters include Ibisbill in India, Bornean Bistlehead in Malaysia, and Magellanic Plover in Chile, complete with amazing photos. GBBC participants even reported two birds, Millpo Tapaculo and Santa Marta Screech-Owl that have not yet been described in the scientific literature as new species.

Participants from more than 100 countries submitted a record 147,265 bird checklists for the annual Great Backyard Bird Count and broke the previous count record for the number of species identified. The 5,090 species reported represents nearly half the possible bird species in the world. The four-day count was held February 13-16, the 18th year for the event which is a joint project of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the National Audubon Society with partner Bird Studies Canada. The information gathered by tens of thousands of volunteers helps track the health of bird populations at a scale made possible by using the eBird online checklist program.

To see all of the numbers, from species to countries to number of lists, go to Explore Data.

And thank you to the estimated more than 143,000 bird watchers around the world who participated in the GBBC this year. Join us again next year when the count will be February 12-15, 2016!

Posted March 13, 2015


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