Brooklyn fowl-fanatics take part in Christmas Bird Count

prospect park birders
Crystal Thiele scans the tree canopy in Prospect park on Saturday.
Photo by Zoe Freilich

Dozens of Bird-loving Brooklynites flocked to the borough’s greenspaces over the weekend for the 120th annual Christmas Bird Count, where they recorded over 26,000 feathered creatures throughout Kings County. 

Ninety bird watchers took part in the event, where they spotted numerous rare types of birds, including 11 American Woodcock, 4 species of Warbler, and a Bald Eagle. 

The hobbyists also recorded a 93 Carolina Wrens — an extremely high number for this time of the year, which one aficionado credits with a warming climate that keeps the birds from flying south. 

“That’s got to be a climate indicator,” said Stanley Greenberg,  a member of the Brooklyn Birding Club who ventured through Prospect Park on Saturday morning.

Carolyn Monastra and Stanley Greenberg in Prospect Park on Saturday morning. Photo by Zoe Freilich

Overall, the 26,834 total birds spotted throughout the borough was a record-low for the 120-year-old event, and comes after a study depicted dramatic decreases in the number of birds across North America — although Greenberg cautioned that the low numbers could not be definitively attributed to any greater downward trend. 

“It’s like the difference between weather and climate,” he said.

Birders at the boathouse in Prospect Park. Photo by Zoe Freilich

The annual bird count was started on Christmas Day in 1900 as a way to keep track of fowl populations nationwide — at a time when the most common way to study birds was to shoot them and study their corpse. 

And despite this year’s oddly-low overall count, the avian enthusiast said the event was worthwhile.

“We had a great time of course, because we were out birding,” said Greenberg.