Nov 22, 2016 | Featured in: Watching Backyard Birds, December 2016

Did You Know That the Hobby We Love Can Help the Birds?

Pileated woodpeckers, cardinals, and other birds visit a bountiful backyard feeding station.
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You can turn your hobby of watching the birds at your feeder into genuine science by participating in Project FeederWatch. If you can identify all the birds that visit your backyard bird buffet, you're qualified to participate in this, a citizen science project of Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology, which runs every November through April. The data collected from across the United States and Canada every winter paint a picture of the abundance and distribution of bird species, and changes over time. The $18 participation fee funds data analysis, the website, and a year-end report, Winter Bird Highlights, but also pays for a starter kit for first-time participants. Does feeding birds harm them? Does it delay migration? How far has house finch eye disease spread? Are Carolina chickadees expanding their range northward? These are some of the questions Project FeederWatch is helping to answer. You can contribute to the data collection. Visit feederwatch.org for more information or to sign up.



About Bill Thompson, III

Bill Thompson, III, was the team captain for Watching Backyard Birds from its inception 23 years ago through his death on March 25, 2019. So much of what he wrote is timeless and remains informative, helpful, and inspiring.

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    by Frank Barch, Sat, 02 Jan 2021
  • I have the same situation. The feeder is attached to the middle of a large picture window that goes ceiling to floor w/ no ledge or sill for animals to climb or balance. Yet every morning all the sunflower seeds have been cracked open and hulls left. Any ideas what it is?
    by Liza Fox, Sun, 15 Nov 2020
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    by Nosferatu, Thu, 05 Nov 2020
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    by Ella Spencer Connolly, Thu, 27 Aug 2020
  • I found where he lives, then I keep him up all day by singing at full volume! Hah, that'll show the little sucker!
    by Pike Juan, Tue, 11 Aug 2020