Birds Canada is a nation-wide non-profit organization which aims to increase the understanding, appreciation, and conservation of wild birds in Canada. In Newfoundland and Labrador, Birds Canada runs two programs that are centered on data collected by citizen scientists: the Newfoundland Breeding Bird Atlas, and the Nocturnal Owl Survey. Birders of all skill levels can make valuable contributions to both, while reaping the rewards of spending more time in nature and enjoying wildlife.
This project will help people foster a connection to nature by learning about the birds of Newfoundland. It aims to link interested members of the public with information that can help them deepen their connection to nature and provide them opportunities to make meaningful contributions to the scientific community.
Beginning birders and nature lovers will be guided through a free online bird identification course by trained ornithologists and will practice the skills they learn through in-person events. During the winter of 2024, we will offer a 12-week webinar series on how to identify the bird species of Newfoundland, including species at risk. The webinar series will also include information on habitats found on the island, how to ID birds through song, and how to participate in the Newfoundland Breeding Bird Atlas. In the spring, bird walks guided by Birds Canada professionals will be offered in towns around Newfoundland to provide webinar participants the chance to practice the identification skills learned online. We will also encourage participation in the Atlantic Nocturnal Owl Survey through in-person events in locations across the island. These events will include a presentation introducing NL’s owl species, followed by the opportunity to participate in a sample owl survey. Our goal is to help participants in all aspects of this project feel more attuned to the birds around them, and provide them with the knowledge required to participate in Birds Canada’s citizen science programs.
The objectives of this project are to:
- Introduce people from a wide geographic area to bird identification and citizen science, as well as the bird species found in Newfoundland, with a series of webinars;
- Get the people of Newfoundland and Labrador excited about their nocturnal owls and encourage participation in the Nocturnal Owl Survey; and
- Provide in-person opportunities to experience birds and nature through guided bird walks in communities throughout Newfoundland, and encourage participation in the Newfoundland Breeding Bird Atlas.