October 07, 2005

The clock of the seasons: Project Feeder Watch

It's not the golden blotches of aspen leaves on the Wet Mountains, nor is it the front porch thermometer reading 20 degress F. (-6 C.) when I got up this morning.

It's the fat envelope from Cornell University's ornithology lab Project Feeder Watch.

Project Feeder Watch is true citizen science. All over the county, people keep an eye on their birdfeeders for an hour or two--or more--every two weeks during the winter. They report the number of each species that they see...and that's it.

But there is no better way to watch for changes in the natural world than to look at the same thing in the same place, year after year, and record it.

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