Cool Maps of Bird Migration Patterns

by Snail Kite on December 23, 2010

courtesy of Cornell Lab of Ornithology and Aubudon One of our favorite birding websites sent us a link today, to some amazing new migration maps created with the assistance of thousands of birders and a few computers.  

Using these dynamic maps, you can actually see the ebb and flow of about ten different bird migrations, and more maps are coming.   The maps actually make predictions on when birds might appear and where, based on a number of factors including past sightings, weather patterns and much more (see below).

We were excited to see the dickcissel as one of the first ten migratory maps, as we just had a birding group spot one last Saturday during a local bird count.  We realize that with your input, Devils Garden Bird Park will be able to add valuable input to this mapping project that comes courtesy of Cornell Lab of Ornithology and Audubon. 

The maps, which will be

released through, display the likelihood of encountering a particular species on a given one-hour, one-mile walk in the morning.  However, they do not give any insight as to HOW MANY of these birds you might encounter.  

The technical explanation of the maps is as follows:  

(Maps are) the preliminary results of our modeling research using eBird data. These maps, which are called STEM (Spatio-Temporal Exploratory Model)

maps, use eBird stationary and traveling count checklists that report all species. The location of each checklist is associated with remotely-sensed information on habitat, climate, human population, and demographics generating a suite of approximately 60 variables describing the environment where eBird searches take place. By relating these environmental variables to observed occurrences, STEM is used to make predictions at unsampled locations and times. 


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