The city of Gresham invites residents to be part of a citywide team that observes the birds that call Gresham home.

Birds are one of nature's indicators of the health of the land and water ecosystems. City staff use the survey information to develop strategies to support native birds. Knowing what bird species live around the city helps habitat stewards know what types of bird nest boxes to install and where.

This opportunity is appropriate for any volunteer with a keen attention to detail. Volunteers survey a natural area or urban site four to seven times over a six-week period, one hour per survey. Experienced birders can be paired with new birders to help with identification skills.

In 2011, 27 volunteers spent hundreds of hours observing 73 species of birds, including violet-green swallows, black-headed grosbeaks and bald eagles.

Volunteers survey in pairs; surveyors with prior experience identifying birds by sight and sound are needed to adopt a site and lead surveys at that location.

Gresham also offers trainings and workshops in bird identification. On Thursday, Feb. 23, the city is hosting a free 'Winter Birds in Your Yard' class from 7-9:30 p.m. at Gresham City Hall. For more information or to volunteer survey birds, contact Laura Guderyahn at 503-618-2246 or Laura.Gud

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