Mike Klotz, seen here during a previous Langley area bird count, has advised the annual event will be proceeding, whatever the weather conditions are. (Langley Advance Times file)

Mike Klotz, seen here during a previous Langley area bird count, has advised the annual event will be proceeding, whatever the weather conditions are. (Langley Advance Times file)

Bad weather or good, annual Langley-area bird count will proceed

Counting from cars is an option

It looks like the weather will cooperate for the annual White Rock/Surrey/Langley Christmas bird count on Sunday, Jan. 2. with the current cold snap expected to end by then.

But even if there is a turn for the worse, the annual tally will still proceed.

Mike Klotz, one of the organizers, said the count “will go on, come rain, sleet, snow or ice.”

“It is entirely possible to bird from the warmth of a vehicle, as an option to walking around, if there is some concern with the chance of inclement weather,” Klotz advised.

“Walking around is still the best way to get the best count, but we understand.”

Counting birds at home feeders is also perfectly acceptable, he added.

READ ALSO: This year’s Langley bird count will take place in the new year

Klotz said there is also “the other little issue of something called COVID.”

It means there will be no gathering in person prior to, or after, the count and sharing vehicles should be limited to immediate relatives.

“Obviously, family groups are good, but I would recommend separate vehicles if you are birding together, or full masks with vaccination status.”

Instead of the usual post-tally get-together, there will be a Zoom meeting.

The count area has been split into nine parts.

Participants will meet at 7:30 a.m. at the designated location for their area and split into teams with the hope of covering the whole area from 8 a.m. onward.

READ ALSO: Keeping a careful distance, participants prepare for 121st annual bird count in Langley

Christmas bird counts began in 1900, when a group of concerned natural historians felt it was better to count living birds than try to shoot as many as possible in a day.

The count is an early-winter bird census by the National Audubon Society, conducted with the help of more than 70,000 volunteers across Canada, the U.S. and many other countries in the Western Hemisphere.

Information collected by participants over the past century are one of only two large pools of data about how birds of the Americas have been faring over time.

In 1962, the first count was carried out in the Surrey municipality with 17 observers.

For more information, or to participate in this year’s count, contact Gareth Pugh at 604-649-1027 or email gareth@intergate.ca.


Have a story tip? Email: dan.ferguson@langleyadvancetimes.com

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