Cache Valley (Logan) Christmas Bird Count

Join us Saturday, December 16th, for the Cache Valley (Logan) Christmas Bird Count. It will be an adventure… We are looking forward to your participation this month. Please check out our reports for updates.

Logan, UT Christmas Bird Count Map per Bryan Dixon

Logan, UT
Christmas Bird Count Map
per Bryan Dixon

National Audubon Interactive ArcGIS map (Zoom in, No sector lines, opens in new window)
Cache Valley (Logan) Christmas Bird Count Circle with Sector Lines(A pdf that opens in a new window and can be zoomed)

  • Contents:
  • Overview

    Christmas Bird Count December 2022: Cassin's Finch, Carpodacus cassinii Courtesy US FWS, Dave Menke, Photographer

    Cassin’s Finch, Carpodacus cassinii
    Courtesy US FWS, Dave Menke, Photographer

    Male House Finch in Mating Plumage, Haemorhous mexicanus, Courtesy US FWS Gary Kramer, Photographer

    Male House Finch in Mating Plumage
    Haemorhous mexicanus
    Courtesy US FWS, Gary Kramer, Photographer

    Audubon chapters everywhere invite volunteers to join the Annual Christmas Bird Count, and that means it’s time to hone our bird watching skills for the longest-running community science project. Seasoned birders and beginners alike spend a few minutes or a full day on this annual census of birds. Those just starting to notice birds can be valuable spotters in the mobile sectors, and can quickly learn to observe the subtle differences between similar species seen from the comfort of home, where no bird feeder is required, and valuable contributions can be made with just a few minutes of counting birds.

    The Bridgerland Audubon Society launched the Cache Christmas Bird Count watch circle in 1955, contributing to a tradition launched in1900 by ornithologist Frank M. Chapman who out of concern for dwindling bird populations managed to change the culture from annual Christmas bird shooting contests into bird counting contests. Bridgerland Audubon always schedules on the first Saturday on or following December 14th, and typically documents about 100 species of birds.

    The Cache Valley watch circle is divided into eleven sectors, including a 4 a.m. owling sector, and includes all homes within a 7.5 mile radius from the center of the circle which is located at Main Street & Hyde Park Lane (Hwy 91 & 3600 N). The same 15-mile diameter watch circle is surveyed each December – that’s about 177 square miles, and we can use all the help we can get, especially from folks watching from home. Don’t worry if you can’t identify all of the birds you see – you will just report the ones you do recognize. You can also get help by posting photos to the Bridgerland Audubon Facebook group, where you’ll also see posts about the Dark-eyed Junco, a small dark bird with a white belly, and subspecies which include the Oregon Junco with a black hood and neck, the Pink-Sided, the Gray-headed, and the Slate Junco.

    The Home Sector provides a lot of extra data on about 32 species, the most common of which are available on a one page photo-illustrated checklist on the Bridgerland Audubon website where you will also find links to the free Merlin App which identifies birds by their songs. The Visitors Bureau has a nice selection of Utah Bird field guides which are great for beginners.

    Bird identification is all about learning to notice the little differences in size, coloration patterns, shape of the beak, the crown of the head, and the tip of the tail. For example a House Finch and a Cassin’s Finch may look the same at first glance, but the House Finch has streaks on the side of the body, a rounded tail tip, and the red over the eyes is more like a headband than a top hat. The Cassin’s Finch has a notched tail, red cap, and lacks those streaks on the breast and and sides. The Pine Siskin looks like a tiny House Finch but it has a hint of yellow on its wings and the beak is more delicate and pointed. Large flocks of birds can be counted by blocking off a group of individuals, counting them, and then extrapolating to the whole of the flock. Don’t forget that zero is a number to report!

    We can use beginners as well as experienced birders to find owls, falcons, and odd ducks, even feathered ones. Contact Hilary Shughart, for more information or to join the Count. We count within sectors of the circle and we rely upon local back-yard and neighborhood Home Sector reports too. Above all, we encourage counting in family groups and communicating via electronic means.
    With your assistance and a wink from Mother Nature, we could break 100 species – again!
    [Adapted from Christmas Bird Count December 2022 by Hilary Shughart, Wild About Utah, December 5, 2022,]

    CBC General Presentation v4 with voice over from Audubon Science on Vimeo.

    23’13” Minute Christmas Bird Count Overview

    Additional Reading

    Christmas Bird Count History