CHRISTMAS COUNTS IN ARKANSAS 2020
The Christmas Bird Counts are held around the Americas from 12/14 through 1/5. Counts have been done for 121 years - the oldest citizen science bird database in the world.
If you’ve seen any Audubon bird reports, then you know that the CBC supplied much of the data that made the reports possible. Here is your chance to help the science, building toward future planned reports!
Here are some quotes about COVID19 from the email that National Audubon sent to the compilers: “First and foremost, we hope this message finds you and your loved ones well. We are living through unprecedented times, but the most important things are still those we choose to spend our time with. Due to the COVID19 outbreak, this year’s Christmas Bird Count will require a few changes if your count is to take place at all. Audubon will fully support any compiler who decides to cancel their count for this year. If a compiler would like to proceed with the CBC, they must abide by the guidelines below. Option 1: Run a COVID-19 safe and socially distanced CBC, if local rules allow. Cancel all in-person compilation gatherings. Social distancing and/or masking are required at all times in the field. Carpooling may only occur within existing familiar or social “pod” groups. Activities must comply with all current state and municipal COVID-19 guidelines. If you feel it is not safe to move forward with your CBC and choose option 2, please know that Audubon fully supports your decision to cancel. The safety of our compilers and community scientists will always be our top priority. One note: There will be little to no impact on the scientific value of the Christmas Bird Count by missing or altering one count season. So again, we urge you to prioritize your safety and the safety of others when making your decision.”
So in Arkansas it will be a very different counting season than normal. Some counts may be canceled, some modified. Some dates may need changed, at the last minute. Some counts will have reduced numbers of volunteers and some may only want counters from their local Audubon chapter. Some counts won’t be adding birders into an already social birding group. Federal and state agencies are likely to have other COVID rules. If you feel safe counting by all means contact a compiler for the guidelines for their count. If you would rather sit this year out, by all means do so!
You’re welcome to contact me for general information – Leif.anderson “at” usda.gov or leave a message at 479-284-3150 ext 3151.
Here are the count dates I’ve heard about so far. I’ll repost as other dates are set or changed. “at” means “@” in the list below.
Dec 14th Mon:
HOT SPRINGS VILLAGE; Chris Cash; c52cash “at” sbcglobal.net Sponsored by Hot Springs Village Audubon (COVID: HSV Audubon members only this year please)
RED SLOUGH, OK; David Arbour arbour “at” Windstream.net
Dec 15th Tues:
NORTH FORK of the ILLINOIS BAYOU (near Hector); Dwayne Rambo; dwayne.rambo “at” usda.gov; Sponsored by US Forest Service.
Dec 16th Wed:
BUFFALO NATIONAL RIVER EAST (near Buffalo Point on Hwy 14); Jack Stewart; jampack1 “at” mac.com; Sponsored by Buffalo National River Partners. (COVID: Please, no lodging available this year)
JONESBORO; Virginie Rolland; vrolland “at” astate.edu (COVID: Please, no new counters this year)
SYLAMORE RANGER DISTRICT; (near Mountain View); Idun Guenther; idun.guenther “at” usda.gov Sponsored by US Forest Service.
TEXARKANA (northern Miller co); Don Kyle; rondokyle “at” windstream.net Meeting 7am at Rondo Methodist Church at jct of Hwy 237 & E 19th st.
MISSISSIPPI RIVER SP (near Marianna); Cara Curtis; cara.curtis “at” arkansas.gov Sponsored by Mississippi River SP
WHITE RIVER NWR; (Near St. Charles) Than Boves; tboves “at” astate.edu
ARKADELPHIA; Evelyn & Glenn Good; theoldcrow “at” sbcglobal.net
CROOKED CREEK (near Harrison); Alan Gregory; quattro “at” windstream.net
FORT SMITH; Bill Beall; billtoka “at” mynewroads.com (Bill has been compiling for 70 years!!)
LITTLE ROCK; Dan Scheiman; birddan “at” comcast.net Sponsored by the Audubon Society of Central AR
VILLAGE CREEK SP; Heather Runyan; heather.runyon “at” arkansas.gov 870-238-9406 Sponsored by Village Creek SP.
CONWAY; Maureen McClung; mcclung “at” Hendrix.edu or Cody Massery Codythebirder “at” outlook.com
FAYETTEVILLE; Joe Neal; joeneal “at” uark.edu; Sponsored by NorthWest AR Audubon.
HOT SPRINGS NATIONAL PARK; Nathan Charlton; Nathan_charlton “at” nps.gov Sponsored by Hot Springs NP & Garland County Audubon.
LONOKE; Dan Scheiman; birddan “at” comcast.net Sponsored by the Audubon Society of Central AR
PINE BLUFF; Devin Moon; moondevg “at” gmail.com Sponsored by Three Rivers Audubon Society
HOLLA BEND NWR; Leif Anderson; Leif.anderson “at” usda.gov Sponsored by Holla Bend NWR & the Friends of Holla Bend NWR.
Jan 1st Fri:
LAKE DARANELLE; Kenny Nichols; kingbird “at” ymail.com
MOUNT MAGAZINE; Don Simons; don.simons “at” arkansas.gov Sponsored by Mount Magazine SP
BIG LAKE NWR; Leif Anderson; Leif.anderson “at” usda.gov
LAKE GEORGIA PACIFIC/ FELSENTHAL NWR; Leif Anderson; Leif.anderson “at” usda.gov Sponsored by Felsenthal NWR and the Friends of Felsenthal NWR.
Please don’t get angry with your compilers, they are volunteers also and just passing on the guidance they received. I’m also a volunteer and this covid guidance is from National Audubon, not anything to do with the USFS/USDA.
Hope you can stay safe out there, and have some fun! Leif, volunteer AR regional compiler