Veteran, novice bird-watchers flock for weekend bird tally

Thursday, February 13, 2014 | 10:32 p.m. CST; updated 5:17 p.m. CST, Thursday, February 20, 2014

COLUMBIA — The international Great Backyard Bird Count weekend will culminate Saturday morning in the bird-watcher's equivalent of a pub crawl. 

Veteran and first-time bird-watchers will tally Columbia's fowls during the Neighborhood Feeder Crawl. Participants will "crawl" to five feeder locations around town, said Bill Mees, president of the Columbia Audubon Association, which is coordinating the event.

If you go...

What: Feeder Crawl around Columbia to celebrate the International Great Backyard Bird Count Weekend

When: 8 a.m. until noon Saturday

Where: The songbird station at 2010 Chapel Plaza Court

Other info: Organizers encourage participants to bring binoculars and cameras. No reservation is required

Contact: Kevin Wehner, 815-0352 or

Resources for beginners:

February Checklist for Boone County

Birds of Missouri: Descriptions, pictures and sounds.


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The excursion is free and open to anyone, regardless of bird-watching experience. Group organizers and participants will convene at 8 a.m. Saturday at the first outpost, the Songbird Station, at 2010 Chapel Plaza Court. No reservation is required.

Newcomers can benefit from the knowledge of more experienced birders, Mees said, although the event is more about fun than orthography. "All you need to know, really, is: Is that a bird or a dog?"

Volunteers will distribute maps to watchers. Participants will have 15 minutes at each stop to count and photograph the birds, Mees said.

The Columbia Audubon Society typically hosts about two or three outings a month, member Susan Schabilion said.

Last April, the 16th annual Great Backyard Bird Count weekend went global for the first time. More than 100 countries were represented in the inaugural international count, according to last year's count report.

Supervising editor is Adam Aton.

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