Did you know that this Sunday, October 8, is the 14th annual Big Sit! (exclamation point added by the organizers, not me.)
The Big Sit! is an event that centers around spotting as many species as possible in 24 hours. In this way, it is similar to other big birding events. What makes The Big Sit! so special is, you guessed it, the sitting. Every participant must stay within the confines of a 17-foot diameter circle. Fortunately, you can create your own circle, preferably in a very birdy area. You can count any bird that you can see or hear outside the circle, but your observations only count if they are made within the circle. Participants can enter and exit a circle as frequently as desired, but must return to the exact spot each time. Thus, collaborators can work in shifts and tally results for the circle, not the individual birders.
Be advised that this free event is open to every person and club in any country. The event was founded by the New Haven (CT) Bird Club, but has spread across the country. In fact, there are now Big Sit! circles all over the world. If we were available, we would be joining our colleagues at Hudson River Audubon in their Big Sit. Instead, I’ll be sitting in Giants Stadium watching my team demolish the odiously-named Washington Redskins, though I anticipate spotting a gull or two.
To see if birders are sitting big in your neck of the woods, check with your local Audubon chapter or BirdWatcher’s Digest, one of the sponsors of The Big Sit! Click here for rules, registration, and reportage.