PIERRE, S.D. – Millions of novice and accomplished bird watchers can make their love of nature count for science during the 21st Annual Great Backyard Bird Count.

On Feb. 16-19, anyone can count birds wherever they are and enter their results online. These reports create a real-time picture of where birds are across the continent and contribute valuable information for science and conservation.

“During the count, bird watchers tally up birds for as little as 15 minutes, or for as long as they like, keeping track of the highest number of each bird species they see together at one time,” said Eileen Dowd Stukel, wildlife diversity coordinator for South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks (GFP). “People are encouraged to report birds from public lands, local parks and their own backyards.”

Participants enter their numbers online at where they can explore sightings maps, lists and charts as the count progresses.

There is no fee to participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count. The event is led by the National Audubon Society, the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology and Bird Studies Canada.

Badland’s Annual Christmas Bird Count

December 16, 2017

Badlands National Park will conduct its annual Audubon Christmas Bird Count on Thursday, December 28, 2017.  Participants will meet in front of the Ben Reifel Visitor Center at 7:30am.  Enjoy a day of birding and help document winter birdlife in the park.

Participants need not be experts.  Experienced birders from the Bird Conservancy of the Rockies will be assisting with bird identification.  Plan to bring binoculars, a lunch and snacks, plenty of water, and clothes for varied winter weather conditions. A camera and field guidebooks are also suggested.  For more information, contact Nancy Drilling at