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19th Annual Great Backyard Bird Count

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Sara E. Drumheller

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Friday through Monday, February 12–15, 2016

The Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC) is an annual, four-day event that encourages bird watchers of all ages and skill levels to count birds and report their results online to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. The data collected gives useful information to scientists, which enables them to better evaluate fluctuations in bird populations. To learn more, visit gbbc.birdcount.org.

Wake County Parks staff encourages you to participate by joining us for our counts and by counting in your own backyard! Our parks are offering programs (listed below for each park) and events to encourage your involvement in GBBC!
Whether you're an avid birder or a beginner who wants to learn more about local birds, the GBBC is for you!
Great Backyard Bird Count Programs
Happening in our Wake County Parks:
Preregistration is required for all programs, unless otherwise noted.
To register online, visit each park's web page or visit our online registration website.

Blue Jay Point County Park

Owl Prowl
Friday, Feb. 12
Time: 6:30–7:30 p.m.
Ages: 5 and up
Cost: $5/family or $3/individual
Venture into the night on a Blue Jay hike. Learn about owl habits and adaptations as we listen for these nocturnal birds in this kick-off of the Great Backyard Bird Count. This family program is for ages 5 and up. Pre-registration is required.
Counting is for the Birds
Monday, Feb. 15
Time: 10–11 a.m.
For all ages
Cost: FREE!
Join Blue Jay staff to hear a bird story (or two), try a fun bird activity (or three) as part of the Great Backyard Bird Count on this Teacher Workday Monday. Older participants will take a short hike and practice bird count data collection, while younger participants will count how many different kinds of birds we can see from Blue Jay's front porch. Everyone who wishes can make a peanut butter suet feeder to take home. This program is FREE in honor of the Great Backyard Bird Count, but pre-registration is required.

Harris Lake County Park

Introduction to Birdwatching and GBBC
Friday, Feb. 12
Time: 3:305:30 p.m.
For all ages
Cost: FREE!
Learn some tips and techniques to identify birds as we introduce you to the rewarding hobby of birdwatching through fun activities. Learn how to participate in the GBBC and hike along the shoreline to practice your new skills and help us count the birds. Meet at the Longleaf Shelter.
Birding Wagon Ride
Saturday, Feb. 13
Time: 10:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m.
For all ages
Cost: $4 per individual
We will load up in our wagon and drive the back roads of the park, stopping at 5-6 spots along the way for bird viewing and to record our observations. (Children attending should be able to observe quietly.) Meet at the wagon by the playground.
Owl Prowl
Saturday, Feb. 13
Time: 6–7:30 p.m.
For all ages
Cost: $5 per family or $3 per individual
Owls are actively calling to claim their territory at this time of year. Learn about the different owls that live in our area, their amazing adaptations and how to identify them by sight and sound. We will hike along the trails in hopes of hearing one of these nocturnal birds of prey.(Children attending should be able to observe quietly.) Meet at the Longleaf Shelter.
Harris Lake Bird Walk
Sunday, Feb. 14
Time: 1–3 p.m.
For all ages
Cost: FREE!
Help park staff add to our GBBC count as we walk along the trails and shore to identify our birds in the various habitats at the park. Meet at the restroom pavilion.
Majestic Eagles
Monday, Feb. 15
Time: 10–11:30 a.m.
For all ages
Cost: $5 per family or $3 per individual
In honor of Presidents' Day, enjoy a morning at the park learning about our national symbol, the majestic bald eagle! Discover eagle habits and history, compare your arm span to that of an eagle and create an eagle craft. We'll conclude the program with a hike to the fishing pier to look for eagles soaring high over Harris Lake. Dress for the weather and bring your own binoculars, or borrow ours. Meet at the Longleaf Shelter.

The American Tobacco Trail

Bird Walk Along the ATT
Friday, Feb. 12
Time: 9–11 a.m.
Cost: FREE!
We will observe and count the variety of birds that live in this area as we walk toward the Beaver Creek Bridge. Meet at the picnic table at the New Hill Parking Area, 1309 New Hill-Olive Chapel Road, Apex, NC 27502.

Historic Yates Mill County Park

Breakfast with the Birds Hike
Saturday, Feb. 13
Time: 9–10:30 a.m.
For all ages
Cost: FREE!
Enjoy doughnuts with a cup of shade-grown, bird-friendly coffee or hot chocolate for the kids, before leisurely walking the trails with a park naturalist to identify and count the birds. Please bring a reusable mug for each member of your family. For all ages; fee: FREE.  Preregistration is required.
Love Birds
Sunday, Feb. 14
Time: 2–3:30 p.m.
For all ages
Cost: FREE!
Experience the abundance of bird life that's found in the park by watching a colorful slideshow before heading outdoors to see who's flapping about. Binoculars may be borrowed to get the best "bird's eye view". We'll explore how birds begin courtship displays to attract mates and warn off rivals, and also what they do to set up house. Then see if you can attract a feathered friend by learning a bird mating dance. For all ages; fee: FREE. Preregistration is required.
Little Historians: Our Founding Fathers' Feathered Friends
Monday, Feb. 15
Time: 11 a.m.noon
Ages: 57
Cost: $4/child
Did you know that Turkey and Eagle once faced off to see who would be our national bird? Celebrate Presidents Day and the Great Backyard Bird Count in one fell swoop! Discover the natural characteristics that made each such a contender, learn about the use of birds in national symbols and make your own bird-themed Great Seal to take home. For ages 5-7; fee: $4/Child. Preregistration is required.

Crowder District Park

Crowder by Night: Night Birds
Saturday, Feb. 12
Time: 4:30–5:30 p.m.
For all ages; most appropriate for ages 6 and up
Cost: $5/family or $3/person
Celebrate this year's Great Backyard Bird Count with a night hike at Crowder! Learn about owls and other birds that are active at night. Bundle up - it's cold outside! For all ages (most appropriate for ages 6 & up); fee: $5/Family or $3/Person. Preregistration is required.
Kids Get Crafty: Bird Bonanza
Saturday, Feb. 13
Time: 11 a.m.–noon
For all ages
Cost: $4/person
Birds come in different shapes, sizes and patterns! Join us for a morning of bird crafts. Use natural objects to create birds found in the woods and build your own make believe bird! Then paint pictures using feathers and learn the importance of color in our feathered friends. For all ages; fee: $4/Person. Preregistration is required.
Afternoon Backyard Bird Count
Saturday, Feb. 13
Time: 1–2 p.m.
For all ages
Cost: FREE!
Join a park naturalist on a one-mile hike around Crowder Pond and help to identify and count the birds that we see along the way. Learn how to identify backyard birds by sight, sound and other signs. For all ages; FREE. Preregistration is not required.
Happy Valentine's Day Mother Nature
Saturday, Feb. 14
Time: 2:30–3:30 p.m.
For all ages
Cost: $5/family
Did you give a valentine to Mother Nature this year? Join us as we celebrate a day of love and kindness at the park! Make a few homemade valentine presents for our feathered friends including a nesting ball and a bird feeder. Then create a card from natural objects to give to a special someone while eating a valentines day snack. For all ages; fee: $5/Family. Preregistration is required.

Lake Crabtree County Park

Bird Walks
Friday, Feb. 12; Saturday, Feb. 13; Sunday, Feb. 14 and Monday, Feb. 15
Time: 8:30–10 a.m.
Cost: All are FREE!
Join park staff in collecting data for the 19th annual Great Backyard Bird Count. We will look and listen for birds in a variety of habitats, and keep track of how many individuals of each species we find. New and experienced birders of all ages are welcome.  Learn field ID techniques for our winter residents and visitors. We'll end at the park office with hot beverages and a review of our sightings. Meet at the Waterwise Garden.
Birdie Benefits
Saturday, Feb. 13
Time: noon–3 p.m.
Cost: FREE!
Stop by the Managers Office for a variety of bird-related games, activities, and crafts. Learn how you can help the birds in your neighborhood and beyond.  We will talk about ways to attract birds to your outdoor space, how to help birds in decline, and much more. Join park staff and volunteers in giving our feathered friends a helping hand. This program has something for everyone, adults and kids alike! Meet at the manager's office.
Become a Birdwatcher
Saturday, Feb. 13
Time: 1–4 p.m.
Ages: 613
Cost: $10/child
Birdwatching is a popular hobby for both kids and adults. Learn what makes birds unique and interesting and gain knowledge and skills needed to become a birdwatcher. Earn a birdwatching patch, explore the park habitats, and create bird-friendly items for your home and yard. This program is geared for children ages 6-13, and parents/guardians are welcome to stay and participate or drop-off. Meet at the Beech Shelter.



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Content Type: Article Page
Version: 13.0
Created at 1/23/2013 11:27 AM by Sara E. Drumheller
Last modified at 1/12/2016 5:47 PM by Erin Latimer





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