Bird Observation Probabilities

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Bird Observation Probabilities

The data provided to us by eBird is enormously helpful to birders but sometimes they don’t supply just what you want to have. This being a cold and damp day, quite unsuitable for comfortable outdoor productive birding, I decided to see if I could extract some data I think would be particularly useful.

So – here’s the question. What is the probability of seeing species-X at site-Y in a given month or season? eBird don’t tell us that but they do make available the raw data needed to calculate it with a little spreadsheet manipulation.

I have derived probability sighting data for almost 200 species of birds recorded at the Morgan Arboretum and tabulated it in a document you can download here.

This give the probabilities of seeing each species of bird during the four main birding seasons of winter, spring migration, breeding season and fall migration. It cools also be derived on a monthly basis. The raw data used was from all eBird records made between 2008 and 2017.


  • Would you find this sort of thing helpful to you when seeking out target species?
  • Are seasons adequate or would you prefer months (rather more work entailed in its production)?

Please give me you thoughts either by commenting below or emailing to greenbirding@gmailcom


Probability curves for three sample species (December to November)

By |2017-11-05T15:36:12+00:00November 5th, 2017|arboretum, BIGBY, birding, birds|0 Comments

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