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Dark-eyed Junca. Photo credit: Kristine Rubish via the Rockies Audubon blog

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The 119th Christmas Bird Count in Pagosa Springs

On December 15th, 2018, 56 participants from the Pagosa Springs community came together to survey birds for the 119th Christmas Bird Count. They systematically walked, drove, and cross-country skied across the survey area in search of birds. Some folks even surveyed in the dark for the hoots of a Great Horned Owl! Most importantly, all volunteers recorded the species and numbers of each bird found.

Why does all this matter? These observations conducted worldwide, represent the largest community-led study on bird populations. By surveying birds at the same time every year, we can detect changes in species’ populations.

Here in Pagosa Springs we had some interesting findings. This year our team found 63 species; that’s three more species than last year. However, last year we tallied 5,314 total birds on count day, but this year we recorded only 3,466 total birds in comparison. Considering that the data were logged by the same number of observers, that’s a big drop in total birds.

Save the birds save the planet.

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