What do the lark sparrow, ash-throated flycatcher, black-throated gray warbler, and the pygmy nuthatch have in common? They are all birds found in Santa Barbara County. You may have spied one overhead this very day — and if you did, the Santa Barbara Audubon Society (SBAS) wants to know about it. For the second year, the SBAS is having a Birdathon, calling upon the community to help count the feathered creatures in our area from April 26-May 4.
Here’s how it works: Like its cousin the walkathon, the Birdathon involves volunteers soliciting donations from family and friends for birds tallied. You can bird solo or form a team; you can do your counting from a park, open space, hiking trail, and/or backyard. You can also participate in any — or all — of the seven field trips offered (fees required) to Birdathoners, which include excursions to Figueroa Mountain, Matilija Creek, Las Cruzitas Ranch, and Lake Los Carneros.
Since its formation more than half a century ago, the Audubon Society has pursued its mission “to conserve and restore the earth’s natural ecosystems” and “to connect people with birds.” The money raised from the Birdathon will be used to defray the cost of SBAS educational programs. —Michelle Drown
S.B. Audubon Society’s Birdathon runs April 26-May 4. Bird-count results will be announced at a wrap-up picnic Sunday, May 4, 1-3 p.m. at Stow Grove Park. Register online at birdathon2014.eventbrite.com. For questions or more information, email Birdathon@SantaBarbaraAudubon.org.