The Great Canadian Birdathon, formerly known as the Baillie Birdathon, is organized by Bird Studies Canada and is the oldest sponsored bird count in North America. Participants identify as many species as possible within a 24-hour period during the month of May and help to raise money for bird research and conservation. Participating conservation organizations, such as MFN, receive 25% of the funds they raise.
The first Baillie Birdathon held in Muskoka was on 22 May 1983, when 11 participants saw 90 species. It is not unusual to see over 100 species during the day long count. Traditionally, participants meet at Kerr Park and bird the Bracebridge Sewage Treatment Ponds (aka Lagoons) first, and then carpool and venture out to different areas of Muskoka. The idea is to count as many species as possible, so we try to visit a variety of habitats. It is a fun day of birding, bad puns, and snacking in the car, but most importantly, an opportunity to help the birds.
Young or old, beginning birder or seasoned observer, all are welcome to join in the fun. For details on the next Muskoka Great Canadian Birdathon, check our Outings