Florida Bird Monitoring Program1

Mark E. Hostetler 2

The Florida Bird Monitoring Program was developed by the Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation's Wildlife Extension office in June 2001. The objective of the Florida Bird Monitoring Program is to maintain a website where you can enter and view bird survey data collected by yourself and others. Homeowners as well as participants from natural resource fields, Cooperative Extension, and state education programs are encouraged to participate.

Which types of birds are visiting your yard or neighborhood (Figure 1)? Using the Florida Bird Monitoring website, you can track which birds occur in your yard and community over time. If you are a property owner who is landscaping to attract wildlife, you can learn which landscaping strategies and management techniques have worked best for others in attracting certain bird species. The University of Florida's Backyard Landscapes for Wildlife Program (FBLW) and Florida Yards & Neighborhoods Program (FYN) can suggest ways for you to improve the ecological design and maintenance of your yard. Learn more about these programs, BWHP and FYN, online at http://www.wec.ufl.edu/extension/landscaping/fblw/ and http://fyn.ifas.ufl.edu, respectively. By monitoring birds in your yard both before and after landscape improvements, you can see how these improvements affect birds in your yard. You can also monitor the quantity and types of birds that visit any area throughout the state from month to month and year to year.

Figure 1. Carolina chickadee.
Figure 1.  Carolina chickadee.
Credit: Dan Sudia

Most importantly, you can compare your survey results with the results of other Bird Monitoring Program participants. Where and what types of birds are occurring in different areas? Are certain birds favoring one type of property (habitat) over another? Why is this so? By comparing surveys, you can discuss ideas, pose questions, and develop suggestions about how to improve your neighborhood for birds.

Surveys can be conducted anywhere. Small lots and yards, neighborhoods, city parks and reserves, agricultural land, lakes and ponds, and schoolyards are all potential areas to survey birds (Figure 2).

Figure 2. You will record the birds you see and hear during your surveys, and then enter your data on the website.
Figure 2.  You will record the birds you see and hear during your surveys, and then enter your data on the website.
Credit: Mark E. Hostetler, UF/IFAS

For more information on this exciting new program, please visit our Wildlife Extension website at http://www.wec.ufl.edu/extension/ and the Florida Bird Monitoring Program website at: http://bird.ifas.ufl.edu.

If you have any questions, please contact Mark Hostetler, Extension wildlife specialist, at 352-846-0568 or hostetlerm@wec.ufl.edu.

For more publications about wildlife and lots of other topics, go to the UF/IFAS EDIS website at https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu.


1. This document is WEC 160, one of a series of the Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation, UF/IFAS Extension. Original publication date December 2001. Revised August 2015. Reviewed November 2018. Visit the EDIS website at https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu.
2. Mark E. Hostetler, wildlife Extension specialist and professor, Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation; UF/IFAS Extension, Gainesville, FL 32611.

The use of trade names in this publication is solely for the purpose of providing specific information. UF/IFAS does not guarantee or warranty the products named, and references to them in this publication does not signify our approval to the exclusion of other products of suitable composition.

Publication #WEC 160

Date: 2018-11-19
Hostetler, Mark E
Wildlife Ecology and Conservation

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