Western Rivers Bird Count

Help us understand how birds use riparian corridors in the American West


To better understand birds and the river habitats they need, help Audubon collect important bird information by participating in this year's Western Rivers Bird Count. We are calling upon community scientists to conduct bird counts beginning May 1 and through the end of June at priority locations along rivers and streams in the West. We hope birders will head to these sites on Global Big Day (May 4), and throughout the months of May and June.

In 2018, birders helped Audubon to help fill in gaps of bird data, particularly in the Colorado River Basin. Audubon scientists predicted the suitability of riparian habitats where participants would find Yellow Warblers, Summer Tanagers, Yellow-breasted Chats, and Bell’s Vireos, four species identified in Audubon’s report, Water and Birds in the Arid West. Using locations (see map below) on public lands with a simple count protocol, community scientists helped confirm the presence of these priority species. Check out this fun story from last year in the Arizona Republic.

This year, Audubon scientists have reduced the number of sites for the Western Rivers Bird Count to target areas where the Audubon network has an on-the-ground connection, influence on water or habitat management, restoration actions, or water policy focused work. Over time, we hope to show positive bird responses to our collective western water work.

Site locations are up-to-date. Please sign up by clicking on the button below so we can follow up with you about the results. Use the map below to find a site near you (or a place you've always wanted to go birding). The count protocol can be found here and below. Please plan to visit riparian habitats as you are out counting birds this spring!

Downloadable Resources