Bengal reports 489 species in Great Backyard Bird Count 2023 

Birdwatchers across 35 States and Union Territories uploaded more than 46,000 bird lists, making India take the second spot after the United States of America 

Updated - February 24, 2023 10:32 pm IST

Published - February 24, 2023 07:35 pm IST - GUWAHATI

Photo of Pallas’s fish eagle uploaded on e-Bird

Photo of Pallas’s fish eagle uploaded on e-Bird | Photo Credit: Special arrangement


West Bengal reported the highest number of species followed by Uttarakhand and Arunachal Pradesh during the Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC) 2023 across 35 States and Union Territories from February 17-20. 

Kerala, on the other hand, recorded the highest number of checklists of birds, a statement from Bird Count India (BCI) said on Friday. 

BCI is an informal partnership of organisations and groups working together to increase collective knowledge about bird distributions and populations. 

India was among 190 countries that participated in GBBC 2023, an annual event that brings bird enthusiasts, students and nature enthusiasts together for counting birds they see around the places where they live, work or study. 

The preliminary report released by BCI said more than 46,000 checklists and a total of 1,067 avian species were uploaded on e-Bird, an online platform to record bird observations. 

West Bengal reported 489 species, the most among the 35 participating States and Union Territories. 

Uttarakhand, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam and Karnataka followed with 426, 407, 397 and 371 species respectively. Tamil Nadu and Kerala took the eighth and ninth spots with 349 and 325 species. 

Photo of an Asian Emerald Dove uploaded on e-Bird

Photo of an Asian Emerald Dove uploaded on e-Bird | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

Kerala, however, took the top spot in the checklist category by uploading 9,768 lists of birds. Maharashtra with 7,414 lists and Tamil Nadu with 6,098 were placed second and third. 

“The GBBC 2023 showed India’s birds are thriving in diverse habitats from the city to the countryside. A remarkable increase in participation across the country helped India upload the second-highest number of checklists after the United States of America and the third-highest species of any country,” the statement said. 

“The event was significant as it encouraged students to learn more about the birds and to take initiatives to observe them,” Vaishnavi Padigala, an environmental science undergraduate from Pune’s Fergusson College said. 

Pune birders uploaded more than 5,900 lists, the most among urban centres. 

According to BCI, the data contributed by citizen scientists are used by scientists and conservationists to better understand and protect bird species. 

The GBBC was launched in 1998. Bird Count India organises the GBBC in the country.

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