The Great Backyard Bird Count


The Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC) is a free, fun, and easy event that engages bird watchers of all ages in counting birds to create a real-time snapshot of bird populations. Participants are asked to count birds for as little as 15 minutes (or as long as they wish) on one or more days of the four-day event and report their sightings online at Anyone can take part in the Great Backyard Bird Count, from beginning bird watchers to experts, and you can participate from your backyard, or anywhere in the world. In return for your service to the bird monitoring community, you receive the prestigious GBBC certificate.


The GBBC has been a great way to track bird movements and populations over several decades. For example, in WI we have seen a movement of Northern Cardinals northward presumably because of availability of sunflower feeders north of their usually range. The GBBC also allows scientists to track effects of diseases like West Nile Virus and impacts  of changes to our climate. Need help identifying a bird, my go to is always the easy to use website Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s All About Birds. They show pictures, related species, and even have audio of the calls and songs.

If you are anything like me, then you are wondering what are the top birds spotted in Wisconsin. Well first of all, let’s talk rarities. With the warmer temperatures, we are seeing early movement north for many different species including Golden Eagles. There have also been reports of Snowy and Great Grey Owls in the state and some rare Gull species on Lake Michigan. Now, on to the most seen birds. Check out the photos below to see if these birds also frequent your feeders?



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