The 2013 Great Backyard Bird Count set new records this year. This was the first year that was open to participants from all over the globe and not just North America. Checklists were submitted from all over the globe, including from the remote continent of Antarctica. More than a third of all species of birds in the world were counted with more data expected to be entered before the deadline of March 1st.
Participants in San Diego County have submitted hundreds of checklists reporting 242 species so far. The species with the highest numbers counted at one time include American coot, greater and lesser scaup, double-crested and brandt’s cormorant, and several gull species. A few unusual birds counted in the area include reddish egrets, black and white warblers, snow and Ross’s geese, a barn swallow, Steller’s jay, and yellow-headed parrots. Many participants traveled all over the county to count and observe as many species as possible, some included birds seen offshore.
California broke its record of 333 species in the state last year with 352 species reported so far this year. High counts include various gull species, robins, yellow-rumped warblers, northern shovelers, American coots, sandpipers, ducks, long-billed dowitchers, and sandhill cranes among others. Unusual species included tropical kingbirds, trumpeter swans and a ruff. Overall, the participants in the United States reported 628 species. Like last year, the most numerous individuals reported include snow geese, American coots, European starlings, and Canada goose among other species.
The next Great Backyard Bird Count takes place next year from February 14th through the 17th, 2014.