What You Need to Know

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A Christmas Bird Count is Fun! That's the first thing you need to know.

History

From December 14 through January 5 tens of thousands of volunteers throughout the Americas take part in an adventure that has become a family tradition among generations. Families and students, birders and scientists, armed with binoculars, bird guides and checklists go out on an annual mission - often before dawn. For over one hundred years, the desire to both make a difference and to experience the beauty of nature has driven dedicated people to leave the comfort of a warm house during the Holiday season.

Each of the citizen scientists who annually braves snow, wind, or rain, to take part in the Christmas Bird Count makes an enormous contribution to conservation. Audubon and other organizations use data collected in this longest-running wildlife census to assess the health of bird populations - and to help guide conservation action.

From feeder-watchers and field observers to count compilers and regional editors, everyone who takes part in the Christmas Bird Count does it for love of birds and the excitement of friendly competition -- and with the knowledge that their efforts are making a difference for science and bird conservation

The Austin CBC has been held since 1968. 


Be Prepared!
Be prepared for the weather. The day will likely start out cold, then warm up, then get cold again. Dress in layers. If it is wet be sure to bring a change of socks or even dry boots to change into - the only thing worse than cold feet is COLD WET feet!



What About Meals?
Your section team may meet up for lunch at an agreed-upon location, you may be eating while on the run, or it may be that your meal breaks are handled individually. However your section does it is the right way! Make it your business to know how your section is handling meal breaks. That way you won't show up on the morning of the count and be caught without knowing what to expect.
Bring plenty of water and snacks for yourself. Some teams don't have a problem stopping for supplies, but some sections have so much ground to cover that they don't take the time to stop.

The Countdown Dinner

When the day is done, participants will gather at Catfish Parlour South, 4705 E Ben White Blvd, 78741, at approx. 6:00 PM. We will eat dinner, complete the CBC paperwork, countdown our species, declare bragging rights for next year, and swap tall birding tales. 
Menu is available at http://catfishparlour.com/south-austin---menu.html. They may or may not allow us to split tickets so having some cash on hand might be a good idea.