The Annual Winter Bird Count

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It’s the most wonderful time of the year—time for Hamilton County’s annual winter bird count. Yes, really. A bird census, of sorts, the folks at Great Parks of Hamilton County round up volunteers, from novices to expert birders, who then hike through the hills and forests of each county park keeping their eyes peeled for local fowl. “The data helps guide our habitat management decisions,” says Tom Borgman, natural resource manager for Great Parks. It’s not an exact science—the mere sound of a Great Horned Owl is adequate to tally a sighting—but it does offer a helpful cross section. “Our goal is not to count all the birds in the parks, but to get a representative sample of the abundance and species,” says Borgman. “It’s a chance for people to have fun and learn more about birds.”

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