Local bird counts starting Dec. 15

ELLSWORTH —The 119th Audubon Christmas Bird Count will take place later this month.

Downeast Audubon, a chapter of Maine Audubon, will be hosting five counts in Hancock County: Mount Desert Island on Dec. 15, Blue Hill on Dec. 16, Deer Isle on Dec. 29, Hog Bay on Dec. 30 and Schoodic on Jan. 1.

This year, thousands of participants around the world will be part of the longest-running wildlife census, which contributes invaluable data to bird population research.

Count circles are 15 miles in diameter, so often include more than one town. Blue Hill’s circle for example, which is centered on Blue Hill Mountain, also includes portions of Brooklin, Brooksville, Orland, Penobscot, Sedgwick and Surry. Deer Isle’s includes parts of Brooklin, Brooksville and Stonington.

Both advanced and beginning birders are welcome.

Anyone interested joining a team or counting in their yards can contact Leslie Clapp of Downeast Audubon at [email protected] or 664-4400.

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