Project FeederWatch: Time to count siskins and their feathered friends

Bird watchers by nature are a curious lot, and no wonder.

Just when the summer influx of birds has gone south, winter brings a flock of surprises.

Last winter, it was pine siskins, a finch-sized bird with a touch of yellow on its wings, that created the stir.

A year-round visitor to Grand Junction bird feeders, last winter siskins irrupted (not erupted, that’s something entirely different).

That means they showed up in large numbers in places not frequently seen.

Record numbers of the gregarious bird sucked down thistle seed by the pound, crowding feeders from West to East.

Why? That’s what the ornithologists at Cornell University want to know, and you can help.

WHAT: Project FeederWatch, a citizen-science program from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and Bird Studies Canada.

WHERE: At the bird feeder nearest you

WHY: Backyard bird watchers can help scientists track yearly changes in bird numbers and movements

HOW: Starting Nov. 14, count the numbers and kinds of birds visiting your feeder and enter that information on the FeederWatch Web site, http://www.feederwatch.org.


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