The Science Committee strives to increase knowledge of local wildlife and ecosystems through data collection, compilation, and analysis. The Committee promotes Citizen Science in our community and schools. The Science Committee directs Santa Barbara Audubon Society’s Tree Swallow nest box monitoring and participates in other community studies, including the Bird Breeding Study and the Christmas Bird Count.

Breeding Bird Study

The Breeding Bird Study is an account of breeding bird records in Santa Barbara County. As of 30 Nov 2019 there are close to 181 breeding species among more than 8000 breeding records in the database. Read More or Submit Data

Christmas Bird Count

Every year, around the time of Christmas, people all over the nation and many other countries go out on their chosen day to count their local birds. Read More

The Conservation and Science Committees meet jointly on the first Wednesday of each month at 6:30 PM in the MacVeagh House of the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History.

For further information contact


Breeding Bird Study: 2020 Progress Report

by Mark Holmgren The purpose of the BBS is to bring together information on all breeding birds in all parts of the county to facilitate explorations of the relationships of birds to land.  These explorations can inform conservation, bird watching, research, environmental planning, and education at several levels. After 5 years of gathering historic and recent breeding… Read more »

White-tailed Kite Watch 2020 Summary

by Mark Holmgren Breeding presence of WTKI in the Goleta Valley Study Area* has been tracked for more than 30 years. In 2020, the breeding period extended from February into September.  11 nesting events produced a minimum of 14 young.  We do not know how many of these achieved independence from parental care. More Mesa and Lake… Read more »

2020 Nest Box Program Report


This is the content of the  presentation given by Steve Senesac to the Science / Conservation committee meeting earlier in August on the results of the Tree Swallow nest boxes at Lake Los Carneros. Click on the title page for a larger image then scroll through the slides by clicking the arrow on the right… Read more »

Santa Barbara Audubon Society – Nest Box Program

Nest for tree swallows

By Steve Senesac – Science Chair [Editor’s note: This is the full article referred to on page 5 of El Tecolote March-May 2020.] Brief History In 2004, Jan Wasserman presented the Tree Swallow Nest Box Program that she was doing in Ventura.  This ignited the interest of some our members at that time, David Kissner,… Read more »

SBAS Science – A 2019 Summary

2019 continued to be a busy year for our small but dedicated Science committee led by Steve Senesac. Below is a brief summary of the programs they are working on.