Nuthatches are among 170 bird species in North Carolina whose ranges are expected to shift and shrink due to a changing climate, according to Audubon’s Birds and Climate Change Report released in 2014. A new citizen science project is taking flight to understand how birds are reacting to climate change and how humans can prepare for these changes.
To test the predictions of the report, Audubon is piloting the new citizen science project “Climate Watch.” Climate Watch aims to document species’ responses to climate change by having volunteers in the field look for birds where Audubon’s climate models project range expansion and loss by the 2020s.
Climate Watch focuses on species with the strongest predictions in the climate models. Specifically in North Carolina, Climate Watch participants are asked to look for the three species of nuthatches: White-breasted Nuthatch, Red-breasted Nuthatch, and Brown-headed Nuthatch.
Join the Watch
Email your name and address to a Climate Watch coordinator near you. If your bird club or organization is interested in participating, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The January Watch is FULL but you can sign-up to participate in the June Watch.
- Highlands/Franklin area – Franklin Bird Club and Highlands Plateau Audubon Society - Contact Jean Hunnicutt, email@example.com
- Asheville area – Elisha Mitchell Audubon Society - Contact Tom Tribble, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Burnsville/Yancey County area – High Peaks Birders - Contact Russ Oates, email@example.com
- Boone area – High Country Audubon Society - Contact Bob Cherry, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Charlotte area – Mecklenburg Audubon Society - Contact Ken Kneidel, email@example.com
- Winston-Salem area – Forsyth Audubon - Contact Ron Morris, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Wilmington area – Cape Fear Audubon Society - Contact Charley Winterbauer, email@example.com
- Raleigh area – Wake Audubon Society - Contact Lena Gallitano, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Greensboro area – T. Gilbert Pearson Audubon Society - Contact Lynn Moseley, email@example.com
2. Hone your nuthatch finding skills
Make sure you can identify the three species by sight and sound.
3. Get ready for the survey times
Climate Watch will occur over two 15-day periods each year, in the winter and in the breeding season: January 15-30 and June 1-15.