Start of Common bird monitoring for 2018: season 15th!

For 15th time in a row, Bulgarian Society for the Protection of birds will organize the monitoring of common birds in Bulgaria. Results are used to assess the state of common birds and their habitat. Observations are recorded by amateur observers who visit their sites for observation twice a year.

In the last assessment of the state of common birds were assessed the state of 76 common birds. The ones in decline are 16%, those with increasing and stable trends are 25% each and the remaining 34% have uncertain trend category. To be able to make these conclusions we included observations from over 300 sites.

To continue following the state of common birds we need to continue monitoring of these selected sites. Each of them is 1 km sq. in size and takes 1-2 hours to walk it around. Each site needs to be visited twice every spring (once in the beginning of May and once in the beginning of June) and to record the species seen. The more years is the development of one site followed, the more interesting are the observations and conclusions for changes in environment.

With this letter we would like to attract the attention of all amateur birdwatchers that already have monitoring sites or wish to take part in the monitoring activities. Including new sites and observers will allow us to assess the state of more species and include regions with no monitoring and little coverage.

To take part you need to follow the instructions here (Bulgarian only but can use google translator). All instructions and manuals can be downloaded from here. Preferred way for recording the observations is the app SmartBirds Pro, which has a special module called CBM. At the moment the app is only for Android. An alternative way for recording of observations is using the paper forms and a follow up entry of the data on the website SmartBirds.org.

We hope you will manage to devote a couple of hours and take part in the 15th season for common bird monitoring.


Iordan Hristov

Monitoring officer

Iordan [.] hristov [@] bspb [.] org