3 December 2016 – Join the Annual Challenge Bird Count

Ever been keen to join a birdwatching adventure right in Castlemaine and surrounds?  ‘Yes’, I hear you shout.  Well, here’s your chance.

Every year for the past decade or so, the Castlemaine Field Naturalist Club have entered into the Birdlife Australia Challenge Bird Count.  On either of the days in the first weekend in December, our challenge is for small group of observers to record as many bird species as possible (and their numbers) within a 40 km radius of central Castlemaine.  All of the bird counts from a variety of locations across the Castlemaine district are then tallied together (by CFNC member Chris ‘Kit’ Morris), and are then submitted to Birdlife Australia.  This is then compared to our results from previous years, and against counts undertaken all across Australia.

Usually several groups head out across the different parts of the district to visit a variety of public parks, reserves and wetlands.  Each team ideally will have at least 3 people in it, with at least one experienced birdwatcher amongst them.  The main rule is that for a bird species to be recorded, it must be seen by at least two people or heard by three in the group.  If fewer people see or hear the bird, then it can’t be counted.

It’s always a fun day out.  And its a great chance to learn some birdwatching skills if you are a novice.

To join one of the existing teams, meet at the car park on Duke St outside the Octopus building (opposite the Castle Motel) at 8am on Sat 3 Dec.  Bring binoculars, food and drink.  Most groups usually finish by 1-2 pm.

If you want to be part of it, but aren’t able to join one of the CFNC teams on Sat morning, you can still be involved.  Contact castlemainefnc@hotmail.com for more details.

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