Join Golden Gate Audubon Society’s new Christmas-in-May Bird Counts (CiMBC) on Saturday, May 8th!
Find as many bird species as possible in your chosen area… while contributing to community science and generating funds to protect Bay Area birds.
Choose from 25 areas in the Oakland CiMBC or 17 areas in the San Francisco CiMBC. Pick an area you’ve birded before in our Christmas count to experience the seasonal changes in bird populations, or explore an entirely new area. Or select Feeder Watch to count birds in your own yard. Sign up early to ensure your first choice of birding area, since there is a limit of 10 birders per count area.
Our count day of May 8 coincides with eBird’s Global Big Day: We’re asking every participant to upload their tally to eBird so we can contribute to this massive community science effort. Not familiar with eBird? No problem! We’ll host a Zoom class on Saturday, May 2, at 7 p.m. to develop your eBird Mobile skills.
Along with birding fun and community science, Christmas-in-May has a third important aspect—supporting Golden Gate Audubon. Your registration fee of $25 (or $15 for students/low-income) helps us continue our work protecting Bay Area birds.
Multiply the impact of your own contribution by getting friends or family members to support your area team! Find your team’s fundraising page here. Your friends can make a fixed donation in advance or—to heighten the suspense on count day—make a per-species pledge such as 50 cents for every species you find.
More logistical details below… but don’t miss out on this springtime birding adventure. Registration closes on April 24. Sign up today!
Most count areas correspond to the areas in our regular Christmas Bird Counts, but a few areas are not currently accessible and thus are not included in the registration list.
Unlike our regular CBC, there are no designated area leaders. You decide whether to bird solo within your chosen area, or whether to collaborate with other birders in that area. If you choose collaboration, we’ll email you a list of other collaborating participants by April 28 and together you can divide up the territory, create small groups to bird together, etc.
Covid-19 social distancing rules will apply. Masks are required while birding with others. To reduce risk, no more than four people and no more than three households may bird together in a group. So, for example, a birding group may consist of three individuals from three different households (three people total) or a couple from one household and individuals from two other households (four people total.) Note: If more restrictive public health restrictions are in effect on May 8, those will apply. We will let you know by April 28 if health guidelines allow fully-vaccinated groups larger than four people.
Each birding group must record their observations in eBird. We’ll compile eBird data from the various individuals or groups to find the total number of species observed in each count area.
Fundraising: It’s completely optional, but we hope you give it a try! Click here for tips on asking friends to sponsor you. If your friends make a per-species pledge, it is your responsibility to contact them after the count, tell them how many species you found, and remind them to make an online donation or send in a check. Donations must be received by GGAS by May 18 in order to count in the fundraising competition.
Prizes! A pair of tickets on an all-day pelagic birding trip with Alvaro’s Adventures will be awarded to both the Oakland area team and San Francisco area team that raise the most money! (We’ll hold a drawing to see which lucky member in each team gets those tickets.) All members of the winning team—as well as the team in each count that identifies the most species—will receive commemorative certificates.
T-shirts! Commemorate this very unusual birding year with a t-shirt featuring our Socially-Distanced Birdathon 2021 logo: Click here for a range of sizes styles, and colors. WhenCovid-19 is a distant memory, this will be a collector’s item.
Thank you in advance for your participation! As aptly stated by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, sponsor of the Global Big Day: “Your observations help build an unparalleled window into the full annual cycle of bird populations that will help us better understand and prevent avian population declines.”