The Grand Forks / East Grand Forks CBC
For the Historical Records on the GF / EGF CBC, go to www.audubon.org/bird/cbc, then click on Historical Results. It is helpful to know that the code for our count is NDGF.
For a review of 100 species that have been recorded on prior GF-EGF CBCs, click here to open a Word file.
Summaries of prior CBCs can be obtained by clicking on the year:
2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012
Instructions to Feeder Watchers, and discussion of species that have appeared on past counts is available as a Word file, click here.
For a photographic review and comparison of some common winter feeder birds, click here.
To download a form for feeder watchers, click here.
To download a form for field participants, click here.
To download a Microsoft Word File showing a map of the CBC Circle, click here.
The 2012 Count
The 2012 Christmas Bird Count will be held on Sunday, December 16, 2012.
You can participate in the count by covering an assigned area, watching a feeder, or both. Areas will be assigned at the breakfast meeting, or ahead of time if you prefer not to meet for breakfast. CBC results from across the continent have scientific value in documenting changes in bird life over time.
To organize for the count, we will meet at the Northside Cafe in Grand Forks at 7 AM. The cafe is located on Gateway Drive on the grounds of the old Westward Ho. When you come into the cafe, turn right and go to the meeting room. We will meet at 7 AM so that we can head out to our assigned count areas by no later than 7:45 AM. This year our noon meeting will be at the Subway/Caribou/Little Caesars complex at the corner of Washington and 24th Ave S at 12:30 PM, where you can get something to eat and drink and to warm up. We will also check off the species that have been tallied to that point. We then reorganize for the afternoon with the prime objectives being to cover any worthwhile areas not yet checked, and to target species that are thought to be around but not yet counted. The Tally Rally will be at the home of Betsy Batstone-Cunningham, who lives just across the street from the Elmwood entrance to the Greenway, beginning at 5:30 PM. Bring some food to share (not mandatory, but always welcome) as we share experiences of the day and tally up the species. Both field participants and feeder watchers, and their significant others, are invited.
We especially want reports from those who maintain feeders. Several species are much more easily found at feeders than in the field. Simply keep a list of the species seen and for each record the maximum number that you see at one time at some point. The exception is when you can distinguish birds, for example if you see a male Cardinal in the morning and a female at some other time, you should report two cardinals. Please also refer to the Winter Feeder Birds section of this site for a photographic comparison of some of the more common feeder birds, but also keep your eyes and ears open for anything else that may show up!
We welcome newcomers to the count, even those who feel that they are not yet skilled at identifying birds. A relatively inexperienced birder can help by serving as another pair of eyes, by keeping records, or perhaps by driving. No birder can be looking in all directions at the same time! Additional observers can be a great help! We will team an inexperienced person with someone who has participated before.
In addition to Count Day, there is Count Week, which includes three days before and three days after Count Day. Species seen on Count Week, but not Count Day, are still included in the final report. So, keep track of species seen beginning Thursday, December 13 and ending on Wednesday, December 19.
History of the Count
The Grand Forks, ND / East Grand Forks, MN Christmas Bird Count is conducted each year on the first Sunday following the 14th of December. The count is made inside of a 15-mile circle (177 square miles) that is centered on U.S. 2, one mile east of the entrance to the Grand Forks International Airport. The circle includes all of Grand Forks, East Grand Forks, the Greater Grand Forks Greenway, the Red River for a few miles n. of Grand Forks/East Grand Forks, Kellys Slough N.W.R., a portion of the grassland/prairie in Oakville and Fairfield Townships, and a part of the Turtle River north of the Airport. Approximately 1800 CBCs are conducted each year. Most are in the United States and Canada, but in recent years counts have also been held in Central and South America, Bermuda, the West Indies, and Pacific Islands. Over 50,000 volunteers participate. CBCs were started over 100 years ago to provide an alternative to the "side hunt", a competition in which teams competed to see who could shoot the most birds. A typical CBC held today is an event that has social, competitive, sporting, and scientific aspects.
The first CBCs in this area were organized by Dr. Larry Summers who centered the count circle near Emerado. Those initial counts, held 1955-1958, tallied 7-13 species. After a lapse of two years, the counts were moved to the present location and were run by Frank Kelley under the sponsorship of the Grand Forks Audubon Society. Although the local Audubon chapter has become inactive, the counts have continued. A typical count now tallies approximately 40 species with the number of individuals approaching 10,000. The counts in total provide a glimpse of how bird life has changed over the last 50 years. The total species count exceeds 100 on the all-time list.
Count data from all the CBCs conducted since 1900 can be accessed through the BirdSource web site at www.birdsource.org.
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