Cornell Lab of Ornithology offers the opportunity to learn more about the nesting habits of our neighborhood birds while helping scientists study questions about the health of bird populations around the country.
Participants in NestWatch observe one or more bird nests throughout a nesting season and record their observations online. Phoebes, robins, and chickadees are among the focal species.
In a nutshell:
What is it? A collaboration of birdwatchers gathering data on the current condition of breeding birds, such as when they nest, how many eggs are laid, and how many young survive. Common backyard birds such as finches, robins, and chickadees are among the focal species. Information gathered from around the country helps scientists understand how changing land-use and climate effects bird populations.
Who sponsors it? Cornell Lab of Ornithology
What do volunteers do? Locate and observe a bird nest. Using a checklist, post observations online. Lots of resources are available at the website to assist in learning about the birds and their nesting habits.
Time commitment: Short online training and 8-10 visits to the nest(s) during a nesting cycle (a visit about every 3-4 days). Most nest cycles happen between April and August.
Kid friendly? Not ideally suited to children. Due to the vulnerability of nesting birds, this opportunity is children must always be supervised by an adult at nesting sites.
Time of year? Spring and summer