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December 11, 2023

Help identify sparrows, finches and other species at 124th national Christmas Bird Count

The Audubon event is the longest-running, community-science avian project in the country. In Philly, it takes place at Pennypack Environmental Center

Family-Friendly Birds
Christmas bird count Thom Carroll/for PhillyVoice

Volunteers are need to help count the species of birds snacking from the feeders at the Pennypack Environmental Center on Dec 16. The event is part of the National Audubon Society's annual Christmas Bird Count taking place throughout the U.S.

If the classic tune "The 12 Days of Christmas" is to be believed, counting birds with loved ones is a big part of the holiday season. But if you haven't managed to wrangle three French hens yet, don't fret: You can see plenty of birds this weekend at the Pennypack Environmental Center for the 2023 Christmas Bird Count.

MORE: Bike South Philly's festive streets at the annual Holiday Lights Ride

The annual National Audubon Society event takes place in cities and towns across the country between Dec. 14 and Jan. 5. Now entering its 124th year, the nation's longest-running, community-science bird project helps Audubon keep track of species populations and trends.

Philadelphia's count will take place at the Pennypack Environmental Center between 10 a.m. and 12 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 16. Volunteers will fan out across the Northeast Philly nature preserve and tally every bird at a feeder.

No bird expertise is required to participate, but veteran birders can email Stephanie Hoffer Robinson, the center's environment education specialist, at to join specialty groups.

Last year, volunteers counted 671 species in the U.S., with California reporting the highest tallies. Pennsylvania did not crack the top 10, so Philly birders should get to counting.

Christmas Bird Count

Saturday, Dec. 16
10 a.m. to 12 p.m. | Free to attend
Pennypack Environmental Center
8600A Verree Road. Philadelphia, PA 19115

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