It’s all part of what makes a Christmas Bird Count the highlight of the year — a Super Bowl for birders, if you will. Count teams engage in friendly competition to come up with the highest number of bird species for the day and perhaps set new count records.
The camaraderie is one of the best parts. Last weekend, at the end of our day, we Atlanta birders gathered, as we do every year, at Carter’s home for a “counting party” to compare notes, report totals and swap tall tales from the day’s adventures — and enjoy hot soup and chili.
The results of all CBCs are compiled into a nationwide data pool to help researchers gauge the status of birds and the health of the planet.
IN THE SKY: From David Dundee, Tellus Science Museum astronomer: The moon will be first-quarter on Monday. Venus rises in the east a few hours before sunrise. Mars is low in the southwest at dusk and will appear near the moon tonight. Jupiter and Saturn are low in the east just before sunrise.