Report Your Sightings
and contribute to Iowa's history
What are Seasonal Field Reports and Why Do We Care?
about those useful range maps in your favorite field guide. How are they made with
any semblance of accuracy? Who keeps track of this stuff and makes new maps as needed?
Information from people like all of us have provided an incredible view of bird
populations and movements for many years.
Spring - Mar-May
Summer - Jun-Jul
Fall - Aug-Nov
Winter - Dec-Feb
Recording changes in bird populations has a long history. One of the first citizen-science
projects was the Christmas Bird Count which culminated in a picture painted of changes
to specific areas at a specific time of year. Since the 1940s seasonal observations
have been synthesized into a journal (now called North
American Birds) giving a continental view of our birds. States and provinces
have historically published field notes or reports of interesting observations in
their journal, compiled by volunteers in their state/provincial organization. These
self-reported sightings are then combined with those of neighboring areas to create regional reports
for the bigger publication. The big picture starts at home and Iowa
will only be well represented when Iowans participate.
Birders enter sightings ⇒ Seasonal Field Reports Editors synthesize data
(including weather impacts) into
a summary for Iowa Bird Life ⇒ Regional
report (multi-state) is written and submitted to North
American Birds ⇒ Journals are archived and digitized for researchers
Enter Your Sightings
Document a Rare Bird