Big Sit

Join me at Coldwater Spring to count birds for a Big Sit. The weekend of October 11 and 12 is part of the official Big Sit and we will have a team for the national park that I work for, the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area that documents all the birds seen from one spot in Coldwater Spring. I'll be there as a Park Ranger hosting with my fellow Ranger Gordon Dietzman as we tally the birds. Feel free to join us for all or only part of the day--we'll even have a tent if it rains. We can use your help to id birds or if you'd like to casually learn about about bird watching and how to identify birds--this is the place to do it. 

We will have snacks on hand, but if you plan on spending the whole day with us, you'd be wise to pack a lunch and bring some water. Though the official Big Sit is a 24 hour affair, we will keep our count circle casual only count out from dawn to dusk.

At the end of the Big Sit, we will head over to Axel's in Mendota for a Birds and Beers!

Here Are The Big Sit Rules:

  • Bird observations can only be made from within a pre-determined 17-foot (diameter) circle.
  • Birds can be counted if they are seen or heard.
  • There's no limit to how many people can occupy one circle (other than the obvious spatial limitations). Bring a chair if you think you will be there all day. 
  • If a bird is seen or heard from within the circle but is too distant to identify, the circle can be left to get a closer look/listen to confirm the bird's identity. However, any new bird species seen or heard while confirming the original, can't be counted unless it's seen or heard from an "anchor" who stayed behind in the count circle, or is seen by you when you return to your circle.
  • Tally the number of species that you observe. We will submit our final totals to eBird.
  • Big Sit participants can work in shifts. No one person needs to be there throughout the whole Big Sit, however one park ranger will be present throughout the day of our sit. The area can be left and returned to as frequently as desired, but you must be sure to return to the exact 17-foot diameter circle each time to count the birds.
  • The same circle must be used for the entire Big Sit!