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MDC Encourages Birder Help with Audubon Christmas Bird Count
Missouri Ag Connection - 12/13/2019

The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) encourages experienced birders to become citizen scientists by helping with the National Audubon Society's 120th Annual Christmas Bird Count (CBC) between Dec. 14 and Jan. 5 -- including about 20 counts in Missouri.

The CBC is an annual winter bird census where thousands of volunteers across the U.S., Canada, and many other countries in the Western Hemisphere count birds over a 24-hour period between Dec. 14 and Jan. 5. Christmas Bird Counts gather data on winter bird populations to track their long-term trends. Each CBC has a coordinator that assigns portions of a 15-mile diameter count circle to participants to count all birds seen and heard. Learn more at audubon.org/conservation/join-christmas-bird-count.

Missouri hosts about 20 CBCs, some of which are listed below. If interested in participating, contact the CBC organizer listed.

Big Oak Tree State Park on Dec. 17 -- Contact Bill Eddleman at eddlemanw@sbcglobal.net;

Big Spring on Jan. 3 -- Contact Steve Paes at steve.paes@mdc.mo.gov;

Clarence Cannon National Wildlife Refuge on Dec. 20 -- Contact Bruce Schuette at basch@centurytel.net;

Cole Camp Prairies on Dec. 27 -- Contact Ryan Steffens at ryanthenaturelover@gmail.com;

Columbia on Dec. 14 -- Contact Laura Hillman at hillmanl@health.missouri.edu;

Confluence on Jan. 1 -- Contact Randy Korotev at rlkorotev@outlook.com; and

Grand River on Dec. 14 -- Contact Terry McNeely at terrymcneely@hotmail.com;

Kansas City/Unity Village on Dec. 29 -- Contact Mike Stoakes at mstoakes@juno.com;

Liberal on Jan. 3 -- Contact Dana Hoisington at prairiestatepark@dnr.mo.gov;

Maramec Springs on Dec. 21 - Contact Louise Wilkinson at louwilk8@gmail.com;

Mingo National Wildlife Refuge on Dec. 14 -- Contact Bill Eddleman at eddlemanw@sbcglobal.net;

Poplar Bluff on Dec. 20 -- Contact Bruce Beck at beckbugs42@gmail.com;

Prairie State Park on Jan. 3 -- Contact Dana Hoisington at prairiestatepark@dnr.mo.gov;

St. Joseph on Dec. 14 -- Contact Tom Nagel at thjnagel@gmail.com;

Swan Lake National Wildlife Refuge on Jan. 1 -- Contact Steve Kinder at dmkinder@yahoo.com.

Trimble (Smithville Lake) on Dec. 14 -- Contact Kristi Mayo at writebirds@gmail.com;

Weldon Spring on Dec. 15 -- Contact Anne McCormack at mccormack491@gmail.com;

For a full list of CBCs, visit https://bit.ly/2tfmMwb. . MDC State Ornithologist Sarah Kendrick offers these CBC tips:

- If you've never participated in a CBC, tell the organizer so they can place you with experienced birders.

- Share your level of birding knowledge when you contact the CBC organizer so they can make sure you're with a team with the experience to properly identify birds seen or heard.

- Dress warmly. Most CBCs will be held regardless of weather unless inclement weather is dangerous.

- Bring snacks and beverages to stay fueled for a long day.

For more information on Missouri birds, visit MDC's online Field Guide at nature.mdc.mo.gov/discover-nature/field-guide/search.

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