Something different for 2019: 5MR birding challenge
Hats off to Nancy for an impressive run in 2018!
As the New Year approaches, I wanted to encourage folks to take on a new kind of challenge in 2019. In the spirit of both birding locally and exploring areas that may receive little to no coverage, I would encourage folks to adopt a 5-mile radius patch (5MR) in 2019. Maybe many of you are already avid 5MRers, but if not, please read on.
What is a 5MR? Well, you can read more about it here, from Jen Sanford, the creator:
Basically, it's a super yard list – the sum of all birds seen within 5 miles of your house. Not sure how to figure that out? This tool (https://www.mapdevelopers.com/draw-circle-tool.php) allows you to zoom into your home location, and then create a 5-mile radius circle. It's incredible what falls inside that circle. Like yard list rules, you can count birds outside the circle, as long as you are inside the circle.
For those of you who use eBird, it's best to set up a Patch (https://ebird.org/site/patch) of all the hotspots and personal locations you visit (you'll likely be creating new personal locations and visiting new hotspots regularly, so be sure to update your patch frequently). If you don't eBird (gasp!), that's fine, just use a notepad or Excel or whatever database you currently use.
Of course, you're free to continue with more traditional birding Big Years, but the 5MR challenge is more about exploring new areas and the excitement of finding new birds, and less about chasing (and/or missing) birds found by others.
Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports