USFWS Breeding Bird Surveys – Volunteers Needed – June 1 – July 8, 2017

USFWS Breeding Bird Surveys

volunteers needed for eighteen (18) select Alaska Locations

The United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) is looking for volunteers with a passion for birding in Alaska to conduct breeding bird surveys in eighteen (18) select locations throughout Alaska.

Background Information:

The Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) began in 1966 as part of an effort to gain information on North American bird populations. Over the past 45 years, the program has spread beyond the contiguous United States to include Alaska, Canada and northern Mexico states. The BBS has become the leading source of long-term population data for more than 400 North American breeding bird species.

The BBS is a cooperative effort between the U.S. Geological Survey’s Patuxent Wildlife Research Center and Environment Canada’s Canadian Wildlife Service to monitor the status and trends of North American bird populations. Following a rigorous protocol, BBS data are collected by thousands of dedicated participants along thousands of randomly established roadside routes throughout the continent. Professional BBS coordinators and data managers work closely with researchers and statisticians to compile and deliver these population data and population trend analyses on more than 400 bird species, for use by conservation managers, scientists, and the general public.

Methods for conducting a BBS Survey:

  • BBS is a driving survey (few exceptions).
  • All surveys should be conducted between June 1 and July 8 (early June is best).
  • Each survey includes 50 stops, which are located 0.5 mile apart.
  • During the 3-minute count period at each stop, observers count
  • all birds heard or seen within a quarter mile.
  • Each survey route takes 4–4.5 hours to complete.
  • Surveys are not to be conducted during precipitation events or high winds.
  • Observers must commit to two consecutive years of surveys prior to signing-up for a route.
  • Please visit for more information.

Below is an updated list of ALL vacant routes in the state, as well as a brief overview of the program.

Vacant Routes (18 in total):

  • Circle (start coordinates: 65.7907167, -144.0890949 )
  • Haines (start coordinates: 59.3363717, -135.5684509)
  • Sheep Mountain (start coordinates: 61.9372560, -147.1759823)
  • Katmai (start coordinates: 58.5472473, -155.7906521)
  • Cold Bay (start coordinates: 55.2694190. -162.8976207)
  • Murphy Dome (start coordinates: 64.9122387, -147.9422770)
  • Adak (start coordinates: 51.8267727, -176.6358200)
  • McGrath (start coordinates: 62.9510075, -155.5890429)
  • Koyukuk River (start coordinates: 66.5800037, -151.9421260)
  • Porcupine River (start coordinates: 66.6919918, -144.7314019)
  • Togiak River (start coordinates: 59.5316820, -159.6936457)
  • Gweek River (start coordinates: 60.8732615, -161.6032109)
  • Tupuknuk (start coordinates: 60.6947613, -161.6098199)
  • Red Dog (start coordinates: 67.8544008, -163.3028181)
  • Hyder (start coordinates: 55.9156605, -130.0162113)
  • Kanektok River (start coordinates: 59.8562241, -160.6818422)
  • Goodnews Bay (start coordinates: 59.3271587, -161.0287160)
  • Paxson Lake (start coordinates: 63.0291587, -145.4974345)
Any questions can be directed to Laura McDuffie at or (907)786-3979.

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