National Bird Week starts with Aussie Backyard Bird Count

As Tropical North Queensland welcomes the change of seasons, BirdLife Australia kicks off National Bird Week from 23-29 October. A significant part of Bird Week is the Aussie Backyard Bird Count, now in its fourth year. Organisers have set a target to count 1.5m birds over 7 days and bird lovers are invited to register and start counting.

Tawny frogmouth with chick. The tawny frogmouth (Podargus strigoides) is a species of frogmouth native to Australia that is found throughout the Australian mainland and Tasmania. Tawny frogmouths are big-headed stocky birds often mistaken for owls due to their nocturnal habits and similar colouring. The tawny frogmouth is sometimes incorrectly referred to as “mopoke”, a common name for the southern boobook whose call is often confused for the tawny frogmouth’s.

National Bird Week is tradition dating back nearly 100 years to celebrate the incredible variety of beautiful birds found in Australia. The annual Backyard Bird Count is an ideal way for bird lovers to focus on our wild and wonderful birdlife in all parts of the country.

Last year’s Aussie Backyard Bird Count saw a record 61,000 nature-loving Australians take time out from their busy schedules to count more than 1.4 million birds. BirdLife Australia is calling on all Australian bird lovers to join in the count again this October.

Whether you take part by yourself or in a group, every bird counted will help BirdLifeAustralia reach its target of 1.5 million birds counted in 7 days to smash last year’s record. With three years of data from the counts already collected by Australian birdwatchers, BirdLife Australia’s Sean Dooley says the results provide a picture of how our birds are faring, both locally and across Australia.

“We are fortunate to have a wonderful array of birds in Australia, many that can’t be found anywhere else in the world,” Mr Dooley said. “The information we collect from the Backyard Bird Count each year not only shows how much Australians care about birds, but also provides clues to what’s happening with different bird species.”

In 2016 Australian birdwatchers recorded more than 583 species, with the Rainbow Lorikeet, Noisy Miner and Australian Magpie topping the list of Australia’s most counted birds.

The new updated Aussie Bird Count app allows twitchers to take part anywhere—not just backyards, but in local parks, botanical gardens, schoolyards or beaches—wherever you might see some birds.

The national total will be updated in real time on the Birdcount app which will allow you to see which species are being seen in your local area.

Follow #AussieBirdCount on social media or visit the Bird Count website to find all events and activities during National Bird Week.

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