Christmas Bird Count
Today was the day of the Christmas Bird Count.
For those who have never heard of it, it's a once-a-year activity organized by the Audobon Society. Volunteers go out into a carefully-defined circle some miles across, and count every bird (by species) seen in the circle. Each person or group is assigned an area within the circle so that the same area isn't covered twice. Some communities have been doing this for decades, others for over 100 years.
At the end of the day, everyone gets together to share their data and eat a potluck dinner together. COVID prevented the potluck this year, but everything else was normal.
It was a very cold day, starting out around 0F (-18C) and warming up to 18F (-8C) by late morning. My husband and I walked about three hours in the morning, passing along dirt roads, logging every bird we found. After a late, hot lunch at home, we got in the car and drove through a different area, stopping periodically to listen or get out of the car briefly. By the end of the day, we were pretty tired, but had made a good count.
We always look forward to this early winter activity. It's a great excuse to get outside, get some exercise in spite of the cold, and connect with other people who enjoy birds.
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