Amateur and hard-core bird watchers from across the Hawkeye State are urged to take part in this weekend’s Sixth Annual Great Backyard Bird Count. Sally Conyne, special projects director for the Audubon Society, says the whole study is being done via the Internet and doesn’t require a great deal of time or effort from Iowans. Conyne says all you need to do is wander around your backyard or community park, identify the birds, count the maximum number you see, make a list, go home and log on.You enter some basic information about the time of day you went out, the amount of time you spent observing, the type of habitat you were in, then enter the species and numbers of birds you saw and hit “submit” and your information is entered in the national tallies. Conyne says bird watchers can spend as much –or as little– time on this project as they want, though 15 minutes is about the minimum. She says you don’t even need to go outside if it’s cold — you can just sit and watch out the window and record what you see. Conyne says the website, “www.birdsource.org”, offers a batch of tips for identifying birds with which you may not be familiar.The four-day Backyard Bird Count runs through Sunday.
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