Posted by: NatureIsAwesome | March 26, 2009 @ 1:26 pm

Help The NABPP – Citizen Science Project!

To All Birders,

The NABPP needs your help; help out with entering data that could be lost forever.

The only complete dataset of bird migration patterns in North America is trapped in a basement — and it’s going to take the power of crowd sourcing to free it.

Stored on 6 million note cards stretching back to the 1880s, the records of migratory birds were created by a network of thousands of volunteers who recorded birds’ comings and goings, then carefully shipped their observations to the government. 

 What is the NABPP?
The North American Bird Phenology Program houses a unique and largely forgotten collection of six million Migration Observer Cards that illuminate migration patterns and population status of birds in North America. These handwritten cards contain almost all of what was known of bird distribution and natural history from the Second World War back to the later part of the 19th century. The bulk of the records are the result of a network of observers who recorded migration arrival dates in the spring and fall that, in its heyday, involved 3000 participants.

Today, those records are being processed and placed into a modern database for analysis. This information will be used, along with recently collected arrival times of migrant birds, in conjunction with historical weather data to show how migration is effected by climate change. The information from this analysis will provide critical information on bird distribution, migration timing and migration pathways and how they are changing. There is no other program that has this depth of information that can help us understand the effect that global climate change has on bird populations across the country.

 

Here are some links:

https://www.pwrc.usgs.gov/bpp/index.cfm

http://blog.wired.com/wiredscience/2009/03/birddata.html

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