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By Natasha Barlow, Ontario Projects Biologist, Birds Canada

Mapping the distribution and abundance of the approximately 300 species of breeding birds in Ontario can only be done with the help of hundreds of volunteer Citizen Scientists. This is possible  through the third Ontario Breeding Bird Atlas – a collaborative 5-year project (2021-2025) that will collect data to guide environmental policies and conservation strategies for years to come.

Sandhill Cranes. Photo: Grant Davis

To showcase the importance of the data collected by the province’s birders, Birds Canada, in partnership with the Atlas team (Environment and Climate Change Canada, Ontario Field Ornithologists, Ontario Nature, and Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry), have created an immersive StoryMap. The StoryMap explores the purpose of the Atlas, includes interactive maps, highlights engagement with Indigenous communities, and more.

Participating in the Atlas is easy – if you’re a birder observing species in Ontario during the breeding seasons, we want and need your data! Atlassing is enjoyable, challenging, and provides invaluable data for bird conservation. Join a community of passionate birders using their talents and local knowledge to help conserve birds. Visit the StoryMap to learn why your participation is crucial in ensuring Ontario’s birds are protected for years to come.

Tree Swallow. Photo: Grant Davis

Wondering which species the second Ontario Breeding Bird Atlas found to be the most abundant in the province?

  1. Nashville Warbler
  2. American Robin
  3. Red-winged Blackbird
  4. European Starling

Find out by visiting the StoryMap here.

Chipping Sparrow. Photo: Grant Davis

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