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Photo: Golli.

Public Encouraged to Count Birds This Weekend

This weekend marks BirdLife Iceland’s annual “Garden Birdwatch” where the public is encouraged to count and record the birds visible in their yards. The aim is to gather data on how various bird species in Iceland are faring while raising the public’s awareness of the environment.

A yearly effort

Today Friday, January 28, marks the beginning of the annual Birdwatch Weekend (lasting until Monday, January 31), which is sponsored by BirdLife Iceland. During the event, the public is encouraged to spend one hour observing and registering the species of bird visible in their yards (along with noting the most numerous species) before submitting their data online.

“We’re talking the annual Garden Birdwatch weekend,” Anna María Lind Geirsdóttir, publicity officer with BirdLife Iceland, stated in an interview with RÚV, noting that the event has been held in January since 2004.

According to Anna María, the purpose of the campaign is twofold: on the one hand, to raise awareness of the environment and nature, and, on the other hand, to monitor how particular bird species in Iceland are faring.

A more extensive survey

As noted on its website, BirdLife Iceland also promotes a more extensive survey that lasts the entire winter. This survey has been held since 1994. Seventy-four bird species have been seen in the survey since then. Redwing, snow bunting, raven, redpoll, common blackbird, and starling are the most common garden birds in Iceland.

“Of course, we’d like more people to participate in the big survey that is in effect all winter, but with these weekend campaigns, we’re hoping that people realise that participating takes very little effort,” Anna María added.

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