Mother Nature is ready to hit the “refresh” button via the springtime rhythms of birdlife. One way to witness the wonder of the natural world and do some good at the same time is to participate in the NestWatch project from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

Taking part in NestWatch is free, apart from taking a bit of time. Participants can monitor open-cup nests or nest boxes, then report online about the timing and success of bird courtship, egg-laying, chick hatching, rearing, and fledging. That’s information scientists can use to better understand what breeding birds need and how they are surviving.

“Scientists working with NestWatch data have uncovered insights on how everything from climate change, noise and light pollution, and even backyard bird feeding affects nesting success,” said project leader Robyn Bailey. “Researchers have used NestWatch data in more than 130 new scientific studies.”

NestWatcher Gina Gerken has lived in both Colorado and Southern California, finding opportunities to explore the variety of birds in different habitats and sharing the experience with others. Gina writes:

“For 15 years, I managed a community bluebird nest box trail and did data entry through NestWatch. It is extremely satisfying knowing that over 3,000 secondary cavity-nesting birds have fledged from our project and at the same time we have educated many volunteers as well. I’ve had fun bringing groups of people to the property in late spring to see all the nesting birds.”

Now it’s your turn to become inspired by the resilience and beauty of nature. Visit to learn more about the project and how to monitor bird nests safely. You can register on the website or through the free NestWatch app, available in the Apple App Store and Google Play.

You can also learn more about the project by watching this recorded webinar. Join with thousands of people around the world to watch birds come to life with NestWatch.

Thanks to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology for providing this content. 

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