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Sea, birds -- join us!

Big question.
The United States Fish and Wildlife Service and its state partners are studying changes in waterbird populations to understand their health and to help better manage them.

Fly with us.
The project flies planes to survey birds. Each plane has two observers and two cameras. One camera points forward; the other, under the plane. Each takes a high resolution photograph every 3.9 seconds. The flights have thus generated hundreds of thousands of images. Some contain large flocks of birds, some single birds, pairs, or small groups, others confusing waves or nothing but calm sea. The images are now on Discover Life. Our task is to identify and count the birds in the images and analyse them along with the data taken by the observers.

We need your help.
We can only process millions of birds if we get lots of help from participants. Please go birding with us and help capture data, such as from this image of American Wigeon, Anas americana.

Updated: 2016-08-10
Mouse over image to magnify.

Instructions: Click 'Get going.',
then follow the instructions in green.

Digital hunters -- see how well we're all doing.