Sometimes, not seeing a bird (and reporting it) can greatly help bird population studies. The Yellow-billed Magpie is at possible risk due to the West Nile Virus and habitat loss. Citizen scientists can help if they live near the range of this California endemic.
Although the Yellow-billed Magpie is common and conspicuous in the open oak woodlands of central and southern California, it is found nowhere else in the world. – Cornell Lab of Ornithology
Magpie Monitors (also known as Bicycle Bird Biologists) are dedicated to helping better understand the relationship between Yellow-billed Magpie populations and the West Nile Virus after a decline was noticed.
Helpful projects through Magpie Monitors include Point Counts four times a year, Adopting and monitoring a nest, and collecting feathers for DNA studies.
With the help of local birders, citizen science can preserve and protect this unique bird species.
2 thoughts on “Citizen Science – Magpie Monitors”
Hi Birdfreak – I’m glad you pointed that out about the yellow-billed magpie and its dwindling numbers. When I went birding with an Audubon group last month, there were only three of them observed (in the Panoche Valley area). And that was an all-day birding trip and about a 30 square mile territory traveled. In reality, we saw more Phainopepla than we saw YB magpies.