limekiln canyon birding

Christmas Bird Count in Los Angeles at Limekiln Canyon

The Christmas Bird Count has been an annual tradition for the past 115 years, since 1900, taking place of the annual “side hunt” that men would go on each year to hunt as many birds as possible. This is my third year participating in the event, last year I counted with Dan Cooper at Ballona Wetlands, and the year prior at Sepulveda Basin with Kris Ohlenkamp. This year I counted at Limekiln Canyon Park with Rose Leibowitz, President of the San Fernando Valley Audubon Society and three other participants.

Christmas Bird Counts are are officially organized through the National Audubon Society and conducted by local chapters or groups that have signed up.

christmas bird count

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Did you know there is a bird census every year?

For the past 116 years the Audubon has organized the annual Christmas Bird Count where groups all over the country gather between December 14th and January 5th to count birds in a particular area.

Like many people do on bird outings, the number of species spotted and how many of each species is recorded and submitted to eBird to help scientists monitor population fluctuations and migration patterns. The Christmas Bird Count bird census was started to replace the tradition of the “side hunt” where men would go out and hunt as many birds in a day as possible.

rancho sierra vista satiwa

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Birding at Rancho Sierra Vista

Last weekend I had the pleasure of going on an annual birding trip to Rancho Sierra Vista / Satiwa led by Richard (Dick) Barth. Rancho is one of the last intact ranches from the middle of the 20th century and is nestled near the Santa Monica Mountains. This bird walk was organized by the San Fernando Valley Audubon.

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Identify Birds with Your Phone Using Merlin

One day, you may find yourself without a field guide in hand when a mysterious bird finds its way into your field of view. What do you do? In situations like this, or for the book-averse, the answer comes in the form of a nifty mobile app called Merlin.

bird day LA

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Bird Day LA

Starting tomorrow May 2nd, 2015, bright and early, there will be about two dozen birding activities happening: bird walks, rooftop bar hangout + bird watching, art workshops, museum activities, picnics and more! Tomorrow will be a great time to meet other birders and expand your knowledge of all the amazing birds the call Los Angeles county home.

albino raven los angeles bird festival

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Los Angeles Bird Festival in The Santa Monica Mountains

Today, I had the pleasure of attending the first-ever Los Angeles Bird Festival in the Santa Monica Mountains. This event was held by the Western National Parks Association at Santa Monica Mountains Interagency Visitor Center.

As I walked in, I first spotted a beautiful Red-tailed Hawk perched on a man’s gloved hand. I walked over to his booth and asked a few questions about his beautiful bird. The hawk and just been sprayed with water so it was covered in glistening droplets.

how to use ebird

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Where to Find Birds

eBird makes it easy to find birds no matter where you are, even if you are in a new city or location.

One of the best and most useful tools you can have in your birder’s toolkit is the knowledge of how to use eBird. Once you have mastered the art of eBird you will know the hottest and best places to go birding, no matter where you may travel!

red whiskered bulbul

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Search for the Red-Whiskered Bulbul

I first learned of the Red-Whiskered Bulbul while searching for cool-looking birds on YouTube. My task at the time was to create GIF sets of pretty birds to share on the because birds Tumblr. I came across this Bulbul and was enticed by its striking plumage and cute red cheeks.

After a few weeks of anticipation, the planned day had finally arrived and we made our way to the Huntington Botanical Gardens to see the Red-whisked Bulbul.