Jordan Lake Christmas Bird Count

Bonaparte's Gull Bonaparte’s Gull -Photo by Norm Budnitz

New Hope Audubon sponsors the Jordan Lake Christmas Bird Count (CBC) each year in collaboration with the National Audubon Society, in a count circle centered in the area of Jordan Lake in Chatham County (count circle map).  The count is done on one designated day, often starting early in the morning, lasting 6 or more hours, and is restricted to the designated count circle. We try to count every individual bird of every species we encounter, seen or heard.

If you are relatively new to birding, you might consider going on one of our New Hope Audubon bird walks (5 or more per month) to build up your skills in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere with supportive local experts. See our web calendar or upcoming events on our home page. That said, we encourage participants of all stripes—beginners and experts, young and old. If you have never counted before, we will team you up with more experienced people. Please note that some coverage areas do require hiking, sometimes for considerable distances over uneven terrain.

For a close-up look at our past results, last year’s compiler’s notes, and a summary of our cumulative data since 1977, see the ‘Historical Information’ section below.

NEW: Visit our new Bird Count Charts page to explore our historical data going back to 1977 for both our Spring and Christmas Bird Counts. On this page you may generate graphs of the abundance of individual bird species over time, and you may also download spreadsheets of the cumulative data.

To participate

The count this year will be held on Sunday, January 2, 2022. If you are interested in participating, please contact Tom Driscoll, our count organizer and compiler (by email: or phone or text to 919-636-0482). All participants must sign up with Tom.

On count day, many of us meet for a countdown lunch. Our venue has changed for this year. We will meet at Seaforth Recreation Area Shelter #9 (our usual site at Ebenezer Point is closed this year). For GPS, use this address: Seaforth Beach Rd, Pittsboro, NC 27312 or these coordinates: 35.727270, -79.035114. The site is reached from US Route 64 on the west side of the lake. We have reserved shelter #9 from 12:00 until 2:00 PM, and the countdown will be at 1:00 PM. Bring your lunch and join us.

Submit your count data

eBird Users:
If you use eBird checklists, feel free to use the new eBird Trip Report feature. It is really handy if using eBird mobile. Create a list for each stop, trail section, or incidental sighting along the road, and use the Trip Report option to create a report that summarizes all the checklists for your sector. When creating the trip report make the ‘visibility’ link-only or public. Effort (time and miles by car, foot, etc.) should be included in the narrative block of the report (eBird won’t summarize those). Remember, report one-way distance only. Click here for a guide for using eBird for CBCs. You can then share the report with Norm Budnitz, our compiler, at:

Or submit forms as in the past:
The following forms may be sent to Norm either by email: (Excel format) or as hard copies (PDF format, note my new address on form). Note that the count forms have been formatted to print out on letter-sized paper in landscape orientation:

  • Christmas Count checklist for electronic entry and submission as an Excel file
  • Christmas Count checklist for hard copy entry and submission as a .pdf file
  • Rare Bird form for electronic entry and submission as an Excel file
  • Rare bird form for hard copy entry and submission as a .pdf file

Count Areas and Assignments

Click on an area in this map to see its number and name. If you click the broken rectangle in the upper right corner, you can see a larger map. The coverage assignments below are based on previous years (with emphasis on last year’s participation) and will be updated regularly. A question mark (?) indicates participants from previous years or participants tentatively placed but not yet confirmed — please let us know!

**Updated January 14, 2022.**

Area 1–Farrington area: Patrick Coin, Tom Ferguson
Area 2–Sexton Rd, E. Stone Rd, west of Horton’s Pond Rd (W of pond): Barbara Coffman, Kyle Mills, Beth Mancuso
Area 3–Horton’s Pond E to 751, S to US 64, Crosswinds Marina, White Oak Creek: Rick Payne, Kerry MacPherson, Trish MacPherson
Area 4–Big Woods Road: Roger Shaw
Area 5–Parker’s Creek: Loren Hintz, Margaret Vimmerstedt, Ben Acker, Emily Acker, Liz Acker
Area 5a–Parker’s Creek (closed area): Steve McMurray
Area 6–Fearrington Village: Frank McKeever, Kathleen Rogers, Bill Tarpley
Area 7–Mt. Gilead Road: Todd Bishop, Elizabeth Bishop, Bob Roth
Area 8–Bynum Ridge, Pokeberry Creek: Diane Rothwell
Area 9N–Haw River from Bynum: Jim Capel
Area 9S–Haw River from Rt. 64: Adam Short
Area 10–West of Haw River, North of US 64: Bo Howes
Area 11–Olive Chapel Area: Leonela Connolly
Area 12–Tody Goodwin Road: Ben Acker
Area 13–Barker Road, Beaver Creek area to Old US 1: Russell Herman, Barbara Beaman, Emma Wright
Area 14E–Shearon Harris: Jonathan Cantrell
Area 15–Seaforth: Alan Avakian, Fleeta Wilkinson
Area 16–Poplar Point: Steve McMurray
Area 17–Ebenezer and Poplar Point Settling Ponds: Marc Ribaudo
Area 18–Bonsal Road, south side of Little Beaver Creek: Joe Williams. Cathy Rodrigues
Area 19–Pea Ridge Rd to New Hope Overlook: Sterling Southern, Doug Pratt
Area 20–Jordan Dam–East: Patsy Bailey, Gene Kingsley
Area 21–Deep River to Merry Oaks: Norm Budnitz, Vern Bothwell
Area 23–Vista Point: Brian Bockhahn
Area 24–Wilderness Island: Steve Backus, Sebastian Burgess
Area 25–Hank’s Chapel Rd and Gum Springs Rd: Tom Driscoll, Steve Foster
Area 26–Pittsboro to Jordan Dam–West: Chris Canfield, Kate Finlayson
Area 27–South of Old US 1, Cape Fear Area, Haywood: Andy Upshaw, Mark Owens, Rouse Wilson

Historical Information:

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