Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Bird count hype

"Hear ye, hear ye! Let it be known that the Great Backyard Bird Count of 2009 commences this Friday, the 13th day of the month of February!"

"Why on earth are you talking so strangely, Mr. Jay? Just tell the people that this weekend is the time to count birds for science!"

"Okay, White-throated Sparrow. Did you know that you can count for all 4 days, or just one of the days? Yeah, that's right. Also, if you participate in Project Feederwatch during the GBBC days, you can submit your PFW counts toward GBBC, too (you will need to submit separate count sheets for both of your Feederwatch days, though)."

"Know what else, Pine Siskin? You can count all of the birds that you see, but you can also count birds that you hear (as long as you can ABSOLUTELY make a positive ID by call). You can also count flyovers if you can ABSOLUTELY make a positive ID on what you're seeing."

"Hey, White-breasted Nuthatch! We have to make sure to tell folks to put out plenty of food for the birds in their backyards! (And I'm sure some other critters won't mind the food, either! But you can't count us!)"

"Well Mr. Squirrel, we also want to tell people that there's a photo contest with lots of cool prizes like birdfeeders, binoculars, Audubon licensed products, and items from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. There's even a Wingscapes Bird Cam up for grabs!"

"Wanna know something cool, Mr. Junco? The Northern Cardinal has been the most frequently reported bird for the last 4 years of GBBC. Hooray for Ohio's state bird!"

Speaking of Ohio, here are some other Ohio stats from the 2008 GBBC:
  • Mentor, OH submitted the 2nd highest number of checklists (460) for all reporting localities (Cincinnati submitted the 7th highest number with 282 checkists).
  • Ohio submitted the 5th highest number of checklists (3,864) for all reporting states (that's up from 7th in 2007)
So, come one, come all to the Great Backyard Bird Count of 2009. To download a paper data form or regional bird checklist, to get info about tricky bird IDs, to see the photo contest rules, to learn how to get kids involved, and so much more, visit the GBBC's official site. Be sure to tell all your friends!

(All images manipulated in GIMP, the Gnu Image Manipulation Program, a free, open-source answer to PhotoShop.)


Kelly said...

Wow, Heather...those are really cool effects on your photos. I especially love the Blue Jay and Red. How did you do that? Plus, it was a very creative way to get information across. I'm going to do it!

Kallen305 said...

I really love your photos! I will be doing it for the four days. I can't wait!

Mary said...

Heather, I enjoyed this so much! Are you a marketing professional? You must have a marketing/PR background. This is the best GBBC promotion I've read yet!


RuthieJ said...

I'm ready to count! Thanks for this post Heather, I didn't know you could count flyovers, so that will make thing more interesting!

James said...

I almost forgot. I'll definitely be doing all 4 days again, and including my pfw counts as well. Cool photos, btw.

Shellmo said...

I love what you did w/ these photo - very fun!

Heather said...

Kelly - Thanks. The effects were created in an image manipulation program called GIMP. I used the "cartoon" effect on all the photos.

Kallen - Glad you're participating.

Mary - Thanks, I'm glad you liked it. No marketing or PR background here, I just happened to get a good creative line of thought going!

Ruthie - Ready, set, go! I didn't know about the flyovers either until I did some digging on the GBBC site.

James - I'll look forward to your counts from Texas.

Shelley - Thanks, I had fun doing it!