Project FeederWatch 2023-24

It's that time of year again: Project Feederwatch 2023-24 begins Nov. 1!
Feederwatch is a simple, fun citizen-science project of counting the birds that visit your yard and feeders. You count just an hour or so for a couple of days each week. Nevertheless, it is one of the most powerful tools that bird scientists have to understand what is happening with all the birds in North America.
Feederwatch seems made for Southern Californians. We can watch our feeders without freezing in the process, and it gets us out of our houses for an hour or two, even if the sun isn't shining. But, if you would rather count from indoors, that's OK too.
Here's how it works:

Sign Up
Join as soon as possible at It may take a few weeks for your print materials to arrive. Still, you can begin counting right away.

Select Your Site 
Choose a portion of your yard that is easy to monitor, preferably an area that is visible from one vantage point. Even if you don’t have feeders, you still can count birds for FeederWatch.

Choose Your Count Days
Project FeederWatch runs from November 1 through April 30. For each count, select two consecutive days as often as once a week. We recommend that you leave at least five days when you do not count between each of your two-day counts. Counting less often is fine. Even if you count only once all season, your data are valuable.
How To Count – Watch your count site as much or as little as you want during each two-day count. For every species you can identify, record the maximum number of individuals visible simultaneously during your two-day count. Keep one running tally across both days. This way you won’t count the same bird twice.
What To Count – Count all the birds you see in your count site during the day that are attracted to the feed that you provide, even if they don’t visit the feeders. Ignore
birds that simply fly over your count site.
Optional Additional Data – There are several types of additional information you can record and submit with your bird counts:
1) mammals that you see in your count site
2) sick birds and bird mortality
3) behavioral interactions and predation events,
4) management activities that you do at your site, and
5) feelings about things you see during your counts.

Report Your Counts
Submit counts at the Your Data section of the Feederwatch website or use the FeederWatch mobile app.

All Counts Are Important
FeederWatch participants sometimes stop counting their birds because they believe that their counts are not important. Sometimes you see the same birds every week, or very few or no birds. Keep counting! That data is just as important or maybe more important than any unusual or rare birds you see.
Most of the time you will see low numbers of “predictable” birds. Don't worry. These counts are the heart of FeederWatch. Focusing on the “exciting” visitors would provide a biased view of bird populations.
While we all are thrilled by unusual sightings and high counts, it’s your everyday observations of common birds that are critical for monitoring bird populations.