Cayuga Bird Club preparing annual Christmas count

Tompkins Weekly Staff


For the 56th year, the Cayuga Bird Club will conduct its annual Christmas Count.

The count will take place on Monday, January 1, 2018, part of a National Audubon Society survey – which is marking its 118th year.

The data is compiled and entered into a database at for further intensive study and analysis, becoming a powerful environmental tool. Unusual birds are often seen, and trends in populations, range and environmental health are interpreted through the statistics that have been gathered for over 100 years of holiday birdwatching.

Ithaca typically has a high number of participants – usually the largest group in New York State and among the Top 12 of the more than 2,100 groups in the country.
Ithaca’s teams will fan out in a 15-mile-diameter circle – covering 177 square miles – that includes downtown Ithaca and portions of Lansing, Dryden, Freeville, Danby, Brooktondale, Cayuga Heights and up the west side of Cayuga Lake. Volunteers can choose from nine areas, each with their own “hotspots” and birders are to count the number of individual birds seen as well as the number of species.

The count will conclude with a dish-to-pass supper and compilation event at 6 p.m. at the Lab of Ornithology on Sapsucker Woods Road; remember to bring a dish-to-pass and also your own place setting.

For information or to volunteer, visit or contact Paul Anderson at