By Dave Coulter
Calling all birders!
One of my favorite low-key citizen science events takes place this weekend - the Great Backyard Bird Count. It's a lot of fun, and it their system is very easy. You can pick any spot you like to make observations, even your backyard (hence the name!) You then load your data online, helping to fill the map with others from all over North America - which is actually pretty cool. In the 2011 GBBC over 11 million individual birds were tallied up.
The GBBC is also a fine way to introduce kids to the local wildlife in a more meaningful way. And you never know what you might see out there. There are still lots of winter birds hanging around along with the usual neighbors.
Keep looking up!