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Monday, October 31, 2022

My 20th eBird Anniversary

 October 18 marks my 20th anniversary as an eBird user!  Can't believe it has been 20 years!  

As an old man, I now look back and see that on 18 Oct 1982, 20 years before I started using eBird, I was a young teenage birder with only 152 birds on my life list. 20 years before that I wasn't even alive and the Beatles had just released their first single, "Love Me Do."

20 years ago, eBird was brand new and still pretty clunky and rudimentary. I only used it a few times before I lost my password. I didn't start using it on a regular basis until creating a new profile in July 2005 when I was working with Audubon and starting to collaborate with Cornell Lab of Ornithology on the Great Backyard Bird Count and eBird promotion.

Here's what eBird looked like back in October 2002.

This was back in the days before the Google Maps functionality, when eBird had its own proprietary mapping function (which got Cornell and Audubon some cool patents that Google and others have since used). 

So 20 years of eBirding for me.  My first bird entered into eBird? A rare Northern Goshawk at Hornsby Bend Biosolids Management Facility, my old stomping grounds. I never entered any notes on that rare sightings--I should probably go back and do that sometime :-)

Wednesday, October 05, 2022

2022 Southeast PA Quad County Birding Challenge

 Back in 2020, I challenged birders in Philly, Delaware County, and Montgomery County to see which county could--

  • Find and report the most birds for the year on eBird
  • Have the most eBirders report 200+ species in the county that year
  • Have the highest eBirder total
  • Have the highest eBird yard list for the year
  • Have the most birders report over 100 species for their yard on eBird
It was a lot of fun, and boosted local birding big time (more details to be published elsewhere soon!). We ran the contest in 2020 and 2021, then added Chester County this year. I post monthly updates on social media to spur on the local birding.  Here is the latest update for the end of September.

We are having a lot of fun, even if other counties are kicking the crud out of my DelCo birders. I'm mostly interested in the eBirders over 200 and Yards over 100 categories, as they are categories anyone can really aspire to and represent increased levels of local birding for most birders.  

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