After I’d written New Zealand Nature Heroes, but before it was printed I heard about the New Zealand Bird Atlas project. So just before it went off to print we added a reference to it in the TIP on Page 18.
There were already lots of great reasons to use e-Bird for recording your bird sightings:
- you don’t need to have photos of your sightings
- you can enter a sighting or list whenever you see a bird or go birding, no need to wait for the Garden Bird Survey or Great Kererū Count
- your observations will be seen by bird scientists around the world, and used in understanding more about birds
And now, if you use the NZ Bird Atlas portal on e-Bird your sightings will add to the information being gathered for this five-year project.
This data will be important for answering questions about how bird populations have changed. Questions like “have some rare birds become locally extinct in particular areas?”, “are there any native birds that have increased their range?”, “what impact do Sanctuaries have on the local bird population?” and so on.
There are some important points that the NZ Bird Atlas team want people to be aware of, see the essentials. Among the most important are:
- use the NZ Bird Atlas portal to enter your lists.
- do a complete count of all the birds you see, you can do this while walking (eg along a beach), or in one spot, and count for at least 5 minutes.
- the country has been divided up into grid squares, so find out where the boundaries are so your list only covers one grid square.