We are just two weeks into the Loudoun County Bird Atlas project and we’ve already collected some great data! Thirteen enthusiastic atlasers have spent 84 hours in the field documenting 1,168 sightings. They have recorded 87 species in 13 atlas blocks, with 11 of the recorded species having a confirmed nesting status. This is a great start!
Use the link below to view a summary of the species encountered and the best nesting evidence collected so far:
http://www.pwrc.usgs.gov/bba/index.cfm?fa=explore.ResultsAllSpeciesSummary&BBA_ID=VA-Lou2009. Some of the highlights include confirmed nesting in the Red-shouldered Hawk, Eastern Phoebe, and Eastern Bluebird as well as observations of the Pine Siskin, Rusty BlackBird, Horned Lark, Wild Turkey, and 3 owl species.
Atlasing offers a fun new twist to birdwatching. Instead of checking a bird off a list and moving on, atlasing requires that you take a few minutes to observe the behavior of each bird you encounter to determine if they are nesting and, if so, what their nesting status is. We will use the data collected during this 5-year atlas to create a baseline of information that can be used to indicate important bird areas throughout Loudoun County, allowing LWC and other groups to design conservation strategies to protect these areas.
If you are interested in helping with this exciting project, please contact the Atlas Coordinator, Spring Ligi, at firstname.lastname@example.org. We still need volunteers to help with this project – roles range from region and block coordinators to helpers. If you’re interested in volunteering but want to check it out first, sign up as a helper and report birds seen in your backyard or neighborhood. Spring can help you get started.