Schoolyard Bird Blitz
Which birds live in your schoolyard? Join the students across Canada who are exploring their schoolyards, identifying and counting local birds, and sharing the results.
The Schoolyard Bird Blitz is fun for all ages and it’s easy for your school to participate. AND your observations help scientists monitor Canada’s birds!
Here’s how you can participate:
Register your school for the Schoolyard Bird Blitz
Learn about your local birds! The following ideas will help get you started:
- Knowledge Building Circle – Prepare for your bird studies by sharing classroom knowledge about birds. Pass around a feather or other bird-themed object for each student to share a word or topic about birds. Build and display your classroom bird word wall or organize into a mind map.
- Classroom Bird Experts – Choose a local bird species for each student to research for a presentation or display. Collectively, you will be a classroom of bird experts!
- Birds and Technology – Check out these great resources to assist with identification or research activities: Hinterland Who’s Who, All About Birds, iBird Canada App, Merlin Bird ID App, eBirdCanada.
- Bird Bulletin Board – Display bird posters, a sightings list, news items, bird facts, photos, and art on a school bulletin board. Share photos with other classes using the hashtag #BirdBulletinBoard!
Prepare for your bird count:
Download your region-specific Bird ID Guide from Birds Canada. Print a card in colour, double-sided, for each student. You may choose to laminate the cards for use outside or subsequent activities.
Print a Bird Tally form to record observations during your bird count.
Encourage students to bring in field guides, binoculars, or posters from home to assist with bird identification.
For extra bird expertise, invite any birding parents to help with the count, or connect with your local naturalist club for a volunteer.
Choose any day in May to conduct your bird count.
Bird counts can be as short as 15 minutes, or up to a full day.
Designate one student to record group observations on the Bird Tally form.
Travel around your schoolyard or neighbourhood as a large group, or separate into smaller groups. Try to reach all the different habitats that make up your schoolyard.
Encourage students to be observant, using eyes and ears to find birds.
Identify and count all the birds you see at your schoolyard or surrounding neighbourhood. Try not to double-count moving birds!
Use the Bird Tally sheet to help keep track of your observations.
Report your observations:
- Submit your bird count observations.
- Share your bird count results with your school community through intercom announcements, a bird bulletin board, a classroom or school newsletter, or local media!
- Share your birding adventures with Birds Canada! Email highlights and photos to firstname.lastname@example.org. Or connect with us on Twitter at @BirdsCanada_Ed, using the hashtag #SchoolyardBirdBlitz.
Questions? Contact Education@birdscanada.org