In just under one month the 21st annual Great Backyard Bird Count will be underway! Starting on Friday February 16th and ending on Monday February 19th, the 2018 GBBC offers an easy and extremely important opportunity for any and all wildlife lovers to help collect valuable data on birds. Across the globe, birds of all types are often an indicator of the overall health of ecosystems and habitats, allowing scientists to quickly gauge if an area is successfully sustaining wildlife or if the species in that area may be in peril. All you have to do to participate as a citizen scientist is log in or create an account at the GBBC’s site and commit to just 15 minutes or more of bird watching.
The Great Backyard Bird Count will provide you with local bird guides and options to download the eBird app, making it easy to enter all the birds you see at your chosen spot. According to the Audubon Society of Denver, some winter birds you may see in the area include merlins, hairy woodpeckers, Bohemian waxwings, mountain chickadeees, and northern harrier hawks.
There are many awesome native trees and shrubs that can attract birds to your yard all year. Check out PlantTalk’s site for some suggestions, such as Rocky Mountain juniper, serviceberry, dogwood, and chokecherry. The Audubon Society also recommends xeric flowering plants such as coneflower, sunflower, and milkweed to provide food and other resources to native birds.