Bird census set to fly for another year in Golden

Golden to join more than 2000 other places all over the globe during December 27 bird count.

The bohemian waxwing is just one of the birds people will be looking for during the annual bird count in Golden.

It was more than 100 years ago when American ornithologist Frank Chapman, along with birders all over the continent, headed out on Christmas Day to count the birds in their areas.

It was the first Christmas Bird Census, now called the Christmas Bird Count, which is conducted by volunteers in more than 2,000 places all over the world. People head out for daylight hours, between Dec. 14 and Jan. 5, and count all the birds they see. These counts are put into a database that tracks the distribution and numbers of winter birds over time.

The Golden area bird count (12 km in every direction), will be held on Dec. 27, and organizer Ellen Zimmerman has been doing it on the same day for 22 years.

“I was always interested in doing it, and I was reading about it one day, so I decided to start it,” said Zimmerman.

“Depending on the number of volunteers we get, which is usually around 20, we cover as much area as possible,” she said.

Zimmerman’s volunteers usually find between 32 and 35 different species, which is admittedly lower than other areas because of the frozen water here. The cold weather certainly makes it interesting for the volunteers as well.

“It’s a funny experience for sure,” said Zimmerman. “People ask me all the time why we don’t do it in the summer when it’s warm.”

In her 22 years, Zimmerman has seen all kinds of unpleasant weather including massive snowfalls and frigid temperatures. In 1996 it was -25 degrees Celsius.

“It tends to be pretty cold, but it doesn’t matter. Come hell or high water, we go out,” she said.

Anyone wishing to volunteer with the count can contact Zimmerman at 348-2225, or And if getting out in the cold is a bit too much, you can still participate by counting the birds at your home feeders. But be sure to register with Zimmerman prior to the event.


Just Posted

Painting by Winston Churchill of lake near Field sells for $87,000

Churchill had painted the work during 1929 visit before becoming UK prime minister

Banked Slalom marks first of its kind event at Kicking Horse

Kicking Horse Mountain Resort hosted its first ever snowboard only event last… Continue reading

New floors upgrade Civic Centre

Submitted by the Town of Golden One of Golden’s most iconic buildings… Continue reading

Women in business: Peggy chalmers is a staple to Golden’s community

What began as a trip to visit Golden in the 1970s evolved… Continue reading

Mountainside Gardens gears up for another growing season

Serving the community of Golden, B.C., for 12 years, Mountainside Gardens is… Continue reading

Vancouver Aquarium’s resident octopus released into ocean

Staff let the Giant Pacific octopus go into the waters near Bowen Island so she can reproduce

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Canada’s Kaetlyn Osmond wins figure skating world title

The 22-year-old fwon the women’s singles crown with her Black Swan routine

B.C. pooches celebrate National Puppy Day

Check out some of the submissions from around B.C. for National Puppy Day 2018

Alberta tells B.C. to stop opposing pipelines if it doesn’t like gas prices

John Horgan said he would like to see the federal government step in to deal with high gas prices.

B.C. mother hit in truck rampage dies

Family confirms mother of four Kelly Sandoval dies almost two months after being hit.

PHOTOS: Students exhibit stunning paper couture dresses

22 paper made gowns will be on display at Vancouver’s Oakridge Centre until March 27

BCHL Today: Prince George avoids elimination with game five win

BCHL Today is a (near) daily look at what’s going on around the league and the junior A world.

Suspect arrested and charged for assault on autistic man

Parmvir Chahil has strong B.C. ties; two others charged with accessory after the fact

Most Read