Earlier this month, we crossed the (half!) milestone of 500,000 bird records from India in the eBird database. A ‘record’ describes the occurrence of a species together with information on location, date and time.
The richness of species in the Western Ghats enticed me into bird watching and from the last year and a half, my weeks are not complete without a bird watching trip. I am awed by the beauty of nature and evolution’s creation of such diverse and rich species of birds and for me, bird watching is more about enjoying the beauty of the birds than anything else!
As an online bird listing portal available across the globe, eBird is a repository of publicly available information on the distribution and abundance of birds worldwide. Until late 2013, eBird in India was used mostly by tourists and birders visiting from other countries. From December 2013, this has changed and now the vast majority of contributors to eBird from India are Indian birders.
If you aren’t yet on eBird, do give it a try! You can maintain your birding lists and total species seen, and can download your data for your records. Better still, you can explore the entire dataset of 200 million records worldwide, to look at a map of House Crow distribution, for example, or to investigate the seasonality of birds in Kerala, or to see the latest sightings from Uttarakhand.
eBird is easy to use, and also has an accompanying family of smartphone apps to make bird listing more convenient. Take a look at the beginner’s guide we have put together, and then take part in the Bird Count India consortium‘s monthly eBirding challenges. The whole idea is to have fun birding, and at the same time contribute to a better understanding of the distribution and abundance of India’s birds.
See you on eBird!