Saturday, January 4, 2020
Information for Group Leaders and Individual Birders

Thanks so much for taking part in the Santa Barbara Audubon Society’s annual Christmas Bird Count. If you are in charge of an area and have not already done so, please call or e-mail the members of your party as soon as possible to set up your plans for Count Day.  Count Day is Saturday, January 4; Count Week is January 1, 2, 3  and 5, 6, 7. (Count Week is the period three days before and three days after, in which birds not observed on Count Day can be recorded for the record—though not added to the species total for Count Day.)

Everyone is urged to attend the compilation dinner at the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History (Fleischmann Auditorium) on the evening of Count Day. Meals must be reserved by December 31: click here to reserve. If you don’t wish to purchase a meal, please bring your own food and dinner service. Dinner begins at 6:00; countdown begins at 7:00. 

Best of luck and great birding!
Rebecca Coulter, Liz Muraoka, Joan Murdoch, and Libby Patten

On Count Day

Unexpected Participants
Group leaders, you might encounter unexpected participants showing up at your site to join your group. Not a problem; just include them on your participant lists and thank you for being flexible.  We don’t expect this to happen often, but sometimes people just don’t mention to us that they are joining the effort! 

Midday Countdown: Goleta Beach at 12:30 at the base of the pier
Please let us know your stakeouts/targets, particularly if you will not attend the midday count:

  • If you have a Gmail account, use the Google Sheets document (see below) to update species sightings throughout the day.
  • If you do not have a Gmail account, please notify us about your target species by noon by calling or texting Rebecca: 805-455-7040. Please leave brief but informative messages if necessary; we will not answer the phone during the 12:30 countdown. 

Smartphone reporting notification
In the afternoon, we will use smartphone reporting for updates via texts and email. Contact Liz Muraoka to sign up for these afternoon reports via GroupMe. It will not be activated until the afternoon, to keep us all from going nuts listening to the update pings. Liz: infocbc (at) santabarbaraaudubon (dot) org.

Live Google Sheets status document
We are using a shared Google Sheets document to keep track of species throughout the day. Here is the link; instructions below:

120 CASB Count Day Species List

  • Enter your target or stakeout sightings on the Google Sheets document. This is a LIVE document, overseen by moderators during the day. Please enter your initials in the cell next to the species name. If there is already an entry in a cell, the species has been recorded; no need to add yours. Exception: if the cell is colored pink, multiple initials may be entered. Please take extra care when entering data here to be sure you are putting your entry in the right cell. 

As group leader (or individual roamer) you are responsible for submitting three types of documentation. All forms are available on the SB CBC website, under the Forms tabNote: all forms will be collected at the dinner, so if you will not attend, please get your forms to us by the end of count day.

  • Participant and Effort: a list of the participants in your party, including name, city, and contact information, as well as the Effort information describing your party’s hours and miles. Instructions on the form.
    (3 versions are offered: 2 for printing (group and single birder); and 1 fillable file for paperless reporting.
  • Species List: a list of all the birds your party was able to identify within the count circle on count day, including counts of individuals of each species. If you do more than one site, submit separate checklists. (Please use the revised list for the 120th count, which makes life so much easier for your compilers!) Two versions are offered: 1 for printing, and 1 fillable file for paperless reporting. To use eBirdsee below for more information.
  • Rare bird documentation: photos, sound recordings, and/or detailed written descriptions for all rare birds reported. 

Electronic Reporting

For sending your Species Lists and/or Participant Lists to the CBC compilers, you have some electronic options.

  1. Paperless report: download download this form to complete it on your word-processor (.docx file). It uses a table format for speedy data entry. Fill in the form and save it, attach to an email and send it to the CBC: admincbc (at) santabarbaraaudubon (dot) org. Don’t forget to write up any rare bird sightings as noted above. 
  • eBird. We welcome eBird species lists in place of the old paper lists. Here’s how to send us your list in a format that our master spreadsheet can read, a CSV file:
    • Download your eBird checklist
      • From your My eBird page (on the main website, not the mobile app), in the My Checklists column, click Manage My Checklists. Find your CBC list; click on View Or Edit.
      • Click Checklist Tools at top right (on small screen this may reduce to a ‘pen & notepad’ icon).  
      • A menu will drop down; select Download. A popup window appears at left; select Save File. The list is sent to your computer, and you’ll find it in your Downloads folder with a filename like [checklist number]_observations.csv. This file is readable by spreadsheets and databases.
    • Send the file(s)
      • Attach your .csv file(s) to an email to: admincbc (at) santabarbaraaudubon (dot) org
      • Attach Participant Data: this is critical, since eBird and
        Audubon ask for different effort data. By participating in this CBC, you agree to give us the data we need to give Audubon! Download a Participant form, fill it in, save, and send with your other data. Or you can skip the form and just list all the required items in the text of your email.
      • Attach rare bird documentation if needed.

For all eBirders:
As a courtesy to your compilers, we ask that you complete and submit all eBird data no later than noon the following day, including your effort and rarity data. 
Email your eBird checklists and accompanying effort and rarity data to Rebecca Coulter at: admincbc (at) santabarbaraaudubon (dot) org.

Before Count day, you can help us by scouting your neighborhood or anywhere else within the Count Circle for the following birds:

Blue-winged Teal
Greater Scaup
Mountain Quail
Cattle Egret
Virginia Rail
Wilson’s Snipe
Iceland (Thayer’s) Gull
Greater Roadrunner
Any owls (other than Great Horned or Barn)
White-throated Swift
Hummingbirds (except Anna’s & Allen’s)
Sapsuckers (except Red-breasted)
Horned Lark
Any swallows
Brown Creeper
Rock or Pacific wrens
Common Raven
Nashville Warbler
Black-throated Gray Warbler
Black-and-White Warbler
Yellow Warbler
Hermit Warbler
Wilson’s Warbler
Any tanagers
Any grosbeaks
Lark Sparrow
White-throated Sparrow
Tricolored Blackbird
Any orioles
Lawrence’s Goldfinch

If you see any of the above, please contact Libby Patten: 
infocbc (at) santabarbaraaudubon (dot) org.