The 114th annual Mathews Audubon Christmas Bird Count will be held again this year according to coordinator Joyce McKelvey. The count, which takes place inside a large circle that includes a major portion of Mathews County, the Chesapeake Bay coastline and a sector in Ware Neck in Gloucester, is scheduled for Sunday, Jan. 5.
Compiler Don McKelvey will meet participants who need their packets and who are not counting owls between 7 and 7:30 a.m. at the Parks and Recreation parking lot next to Mathews High School.
The event is free, but donations will be accepted. American birds and local count results may be viewed online.
The tally location with the traditional chili and applesauce and beverages will be announced at a later date.
To date, McKelvey said every sector is covered with as many as 50 participants, so there is not an open count area. Feeder or individual property participants are welcome to participate if they are within the count circle areas.
Last year’s national count shattered records, according to Audubon. A total of 2,369 counts and 71,531 people tallied over 60 million birds of 2,296 different species.