The Great Backyard Bird Count is an annual four-day event that engages bird watchers of all ages in counting birds to create a real-time snapshot of where the birds are across the continent. Anyone can participate, from beginning bird watchers to experts. It takes as little as 15 minutes on one day, or you can count for as long as you like each day of the event. It's free, fun, and easy-and it helps the birds."

Personal tools

The Great Backyard Bird Count is for kids!

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  Watching a Carolina Chickadee, Sandy Manter, TN, 2013 GBBC
 


The Great Backyard Bird Count (or GBBC) takes place over four days in February each year.

It's very easy!

Watch and count birds in your yard, a nearby park, or maybe at your school. Report what you saw by entering your bird list online.

By doing this, we learn what kind of birds are being seen in the winter and whether there are more or fewer of them than before. Learn more about how to participate. 

You'll have more fun if you learn more about birds. Try some of the games below and acitvities on this page!

What Birds Could You See?

Take a look at the top ten birds reported on the most lists during the last Great Backyard Bird Count and the top ten birds reported in the highest numbers. These are some of the birds you might see too. Show me

To learn more about about lots of others birds, visit our online bird guide.  Type a bird name in the "find" window to see pictures and maps and listen to sounds. 

Learn more about becoming a bird watcher.

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The Cornell Lab of Ornithology is developing an interactive online bird ID tool called “Merlin.” You can brush up on your bird observational skills by trying the two exercises below, the Color Challenge and Mark My Bird. You'll help make Merlin smarter!

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Guess Who's Squawkin'!

        Can you identify some common birds by their song?
Click here to try the sound quiz!  

 

Make A Marvel Meal Treat for the Birds

Print this page and cut out the bookmarks. Tape or glue the front and back together. Give them to your family and friends. Use the recipe to make a tasty treat for your backyard birds!

 
 

Words about Birds

Now that you know a bit more about birds, print out the the special GBBC word seek puzzle we made just for you and see how many words about birds you can find! 
Click here to get the puzzle

      

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Color the Birds

We have some birds coloring pages for you!
  Go here to print out the ones you want.  

 




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Do some bird jigsaw puzzles!

          Can you put the birds back together?
Take me there  

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How to do the Great Backyard Bird Count

It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3!

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1.    Create a GBBC account.
Beginning in 2013, the GBBC will be integrated with eBird--a worldwide bird data collection program used for keeping track of your personal bird records and bird lists. The change means you must create a free GBBC account in order to enter your bird checklists, even if you have participated in the GBBC before. It also means you will be able to access all your GBBC observations and eBird observations under a single account. If you're already registered with eBird, you can use the same login information.

2. Count birds for at least 15 minutes on one or more days of the GBBC. You can count for longer than that if you wish! Count birds in as many places and on as many days as you like—one day, two days, or all four days. Submit a separate checklist for each new day. You can also submit more than one checklist per day for each new location or even from the same location. Estimate the number of individuals of each species you saw during your count period.

3.    Enter your results on the GBBC website (or eBird). You'll see a button marked "Enter Your Checklists!" on the GBBC website home page beginning at 7:00 AM Eastern time (U.S.) on the first day of the count. See our downloadable instructions for additional details on entering your checklists via your GBBC account. If you already use eBird, please continue using eBird to submit your sightings but be sure to enter at least one checklist during the GBBC weekend!

That's it! Now get ready to participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count because when it comes to watching birds, kids count!

Photo above: Boy with binoculars ©iStockphoto.com/Maartje van Caspel.