Activities & MEETINGS:
Hopewell Christmas Count (CBC)
What is the Christmas Bird Count?
The Christmas Bird Count is a long-standing program of the National Audubon Society. It is an early-winter bird census, where volunteers follow specified routes through a designated fifteen mile (24-km) diameter circle, counting every bird they see or hear all day. It’s not just a species tally—all birds are counted all day, giving an indication of the total number of birds in the circle that day. All individual CBC’s are conducted in the period from 14 December to 5 January (inclusive dates) each season, and each count is conducted in one calendar day. The data collected by observers over the past century allow researchers, conservation biologists, and interested individuals to study the long-term health and status of bird populations across North America. The Hopewell CBC has a cumulative species count of 166 species. In recent years increased observer coverage has produced over 100 species per count. Christmas Bird Count season is December 14 through January 5 each year, and the Hopewell CBC is generally held the first Sunday following December 14. Our field volunteers are the people that make the Hopwell count so successful. An evening post count tally is held to hear what species have been seen.
SEE: MAP BELOW or DOWNLOAD MAP (PDF)
How To Participate
CBC participants are organized into groups—or field parties—by the organizer or Compiler of each Count. Each field party covers a specific area of the fifteen mile diameter circle on a specific route. And anyone is welcome to participate, since Compilers arrange field parties so that inexperienced observers are always out with seasoned CBC veterans. If you wish to participate please contact Arun Bose the Hopewell CBC Compiler. From beginner to expert all are welcome. Spend all day or a couple hours you are sure to find some birds.
SEE: DOWNLOAD HOPEWELL CBC CHECKLIST (PDF)
SEE: RARE BIRD REPORT FORM (PDF) or RARE BIRD REPORT TEXT FORM
Is there a cost?
There is a $5.00 fee per field birder per count. Feeder watchers do not need to pay the fee, and all observers 18 and under may count for free. These fees help to cover the costs of generating materials for Compilers, producing an annual CBC summary issue, and maintaining the CBC website and database.
The Hopewell CBC area as we know it toady was established in 1953 with ties to the Richmond Audubon Society that continue to this day. The Hopewell Christmas Bird Count (CBC) had its beginnings in 1929 with a Henrico County Christmas Census conducted by C.O. Handley at Curles Neck Farm. In 1932 the census area also included portions of Richmond as well as Curles Neck Farm. In 1944 the census area was expanded to include north and west Richmond, Bryan and Byrd Parks, tracts along the James River opposite Windsor Farms, the Richmond city dock and Curles Neck. In 1945 it was known as the Richmond Christmas Census, and in 1953 became the Hopewell Christmas Bird Count. The count has been held every year since 1944, and from 1947-1984 was compiled by the late Fred R. Scott. Come be a part of this great partnership.
SEE: PRIOR COUNT TALLIES (PDF)