Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Wednesday Explorers Club ~ Nest Watching

Great Blue Heron, by Scott Kinsey

Wherever you live – city, suburbs, country – birds around you are constructing their nests and raising families. And if they’re building those nests near your home or office, or even a local park you visit, you can help scientists by reporting nests to the NestWatch project at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

NestWatchers report nest location, the species using it, and number of eggs. The nest-watching citizen scientists can also report other important milestones, too, such as times they such as observations of adult birds raising and fledging their young.

"Every year, scientists use data collected by NestWatchers in published studies," says Robyn Bailey, NestWatch project leader. "For example, in 2018, two studies examined the effects of spring temperatures on the timing of nesting activities, and showed that birds nest earlier when spring temperatures are warmer. Such studies help add to our understanding of how climate change can affect the lives of birds."

Great Horned Owl by Georgia Wilson
What do you get out of it? Besides that great feeling of being a part of scientific discovery? You get to witness the start of new life and help to preserve it with your valuable information. It doesn’t matter whether you’re reporting a massive web of sticks like the Great Blue Heron's nest, the compact twiggy cup nest of a Blue Jay, or a pair of bluebirds in a nest box – NestWatch observations are more important than ever in this changing world.

You can register for the project at and learn more about how to monitor nests without disturbing the birds. You can download the NestWatch app in the Apple App Store or from Google Play.

photos used with permission by Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful photos. Thanks for those. This sounds like a great project. Thanks for the information.