Thursday, April 26, 2012

eBird, the power of crowd science

eBird is a user-friendly online bird listing application, and much more. Crowd science, small contributions by very large numbers of participants, powers continental-scale analysis of biological diversity. eBird applies the principles of crowd science to birds, their distribution and abundance.

The Audubon Christmas Bird Count is the original crowd science application, 112 years of data! eBird is fairly new on the scene but has taken the lead in moving crowd science forward for birds and offering convenient and FREE data storage and light data processing for YOU. eBird enables you to track and sort bird records for locations as small as your backyard or your favorite natural area, your county, your state, and your continent!

eBird is BIG. Today, each month, about 1.6 million observations are submitted online by birders like you.

Discover the power of crowd science. Try exploring eBird data through map locations, bar graphs, and charts, get up to date information about birds seen in your area including specific locations where you can see them yourself. eBird is fun even if you don't use it to store your observation data.

eBird is supported by The Cornell Lab of Ornithology and Audubon. Donations are welcome!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

North American Bird Phenology Program

phe-nol-o-gy, the scientific study of cyclical and seasonal natural phenomena in relation to climate, plants and animals.

The North American Bird Phenology Program houses six million Migration Observer Cards hand-written during nearly a century of record-keeping by amateur and professional field ornithologists. Today, you can help digitize the huge data file by transcribing the cards, making this wealth of information available for modern processing and analysis.

Migration data card, 1922., one of six million on file.
Visit the North American Bird Phenology Program to join this monumental effort.

The data cards hold essential information that will illuminate migration patterns and population status of birds in North America. These handwritten cards contain almost all of what was known of bird distribution and natural history from the Second World War back to the later part of the 19th century.

This effort is important. Temperate bird species are shaped, in part, by long-term climate impacts. Birds are impacted by climate at many scales, from daily to seasonal and annual, to century and millennial scales. Climate change, with habitat changes, impact modern birds in measurable ways. Bird species populations shift in numbers and seasonal movements. Modern changes in bird distribution and abundance are accelerated by rapid climate change.