It's all about fundraising, and friend-raising, and fun
Capitol lawn ornaments: The Foundation Flamingoes
A bit of history . . .
The Great Wisconsin Birdathon started in 2012 as a joint effort between the Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin, the Wisconsin Society for Ornithology, and the Wisconsin Bird Conservation Initiative (WBCI). In 2014, 217 birders, 55 teams, and 745 donors together raised $56,000 to support seven bird conservation projects in Wisconsin. Read the 2014 report here.
How you can get involved . . .
Anyone can Birdathon!
Go birding for dollars
You can count birds on your own, or with a team of friends. Sign up on to create your own fundraising page, select a day, collect pledges and donations, and count birds.
Instructions for Birdathoning:
- See a bird species.
- Write it down.
That's all! It doesn't matter where you saw it, or how you saw it, or what it was doing. You don't have to enter any data. Find a full set of guidelines and other materials in the Participant Kit.
Join a Birdathon Tour
We offer a variety of opportunities to do guided Birdathons with seasoned birders that accommodate any skill level, time availability, and budget. Participants register online and are requested to provide a minimum donation. Additional fundraising is encouraged but completely optional.
- Birding Break - $25 minimum donation, morning or evening hours
- Birding Blitz - $75 minimum donation, half day
- Birding Blast - $150 minimum donation, full day
- Birding Bonanza - $500 minimum donation, 2 full days
Not a birder? You can still support the Birdathon by donating to an individual or one of the many teams, including:
These are teams of top-flight birders who ply their great birding skills in Wisconsin's best birding areas:
Big Day Teams
On one Big Day in Birdathon season, two teams will face off in a 24-hour birding competition. They will tweet and post their adventures so fans can follow them in real time and cheer them on.
The Long Walk for Birds
Back for its third year is the famous Long Walk for Birds, started by Bill Mueller in honor of Noel Cutright. Several individuals and teams of birders will trade off walking a 100-mile route from Forest Beach Migratory Preserve in Ozaukee County to Bay Beach wildlife sanctuary in Green Bay:
Last year the Long Walk for Birds raised $9,500 for bird protection, and they hope to surpass that goal this year!
Bill Mueller and friends during the Long Walk
Your efforts--as a birder or donor--enable the Wisconsin Bird Conservation Initiative Partners to help birds across the state meet their full life cycle needs for migrating, breeding, and wintering.
. . . did we mention fun?
Ryan Brady going above, beyond, and beneath in his quest for birds.
Photo by Tim Lizotte.