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Audubon’s Winter Bird trainings begin Nov. 30

With holidays just around the corner, the Weminuche Audubon Society is gearing up for Pagosa’s first-ever participation in the annual Christmas Bird Count (CBC).

To help local birders sharpen their identification skills, Audubon Colorado’s Becky Gillette will offer a series of informal training sessions entitled Winter Birds 101. This mini-course will cover the basics of identifying the 113 species on the WAS Winter Bird List that is used by CBC volunteers during the official count.

Each year since 1900, Audubon members and bird lovers across the continent have given one day of their holiday season to tally every bird they can find within predetermined count circles, contributing valuable data to bird studies worldwide. On Jan. 2, WAS volunteers will cover 14 zones within the newly-established Pagosa Springs count circle. The 15-mile diameter circle is centered on Trujillo Road near downtown Pagosa Springs.

Beginners and experts are all welcome to participate in the CBC. Stay-at-home feeder-watchers within the count circle can also contribute valuable data. For more information or to join the count, contact Beverly Compton at bevkresz@centurytel.net or 731-3471.

The Winter Birds 101 series begins Wednesday, Nov. 30, at the Ross Aragon Community Center’s Arts and Crafts Room from 6:30-8 p.m. Subsequent sessions will meet in the East Tile Room from 6-7:30 p.m. on Dec. 7, 14 and 21.

Training session attendees are encouraged (but not required) to participate in the CBC.

For more information about Winter Birds 101, contact Becky Gillette at rgillette@audubon.org or 883-3066.

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