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Join the "Big Sit" with Monmouth County Audubon

  • Sandy Hook 100 Hartshorne Dr Highlands, NJ, 07732 United States (map)

PLEASE NOTE: This event will start at 10 AM, since the weather is supposed to be unfavorable early in the morning.

Join the Monmouth County Audubon Society as they participate in the annual "Big Sit" Saturday, October 13, at Sandy Hook.

The Big Sit! is an annual, international, non-competitive birding event hosted by Bird Watcher’s Digest and founded by the New Haven (CT) Bird Club. Every year, bird watchers from around the globe participate in this free event, open to any person and club in any country. There are Big Sit! circles all over the world, including Guatemala, India, the Netherlands, England, Vietnam and New Zealand.

The object of the Big Sit is to tally as many bird species as can be seen or heard within 24 hours. The real challenge is the second requirement: Find a good spot for bird watching, preferably one with good views of a variety of habitats and lots of birds, and create a circle 17 feet in diameter -- then sit inside that circle for 24 hours, counting all the bird species you see or hear. That’s it. Find a spot, sit in it, have fun, then submit your findings.

There are three ways to "win" this non-competitive event:

∙ The team with the highest overall count wins major bragging rights.
∙ The team with the highest count in the state wins local bragging rights.
∙  Groups who find the "golden bird," a bird randomly chosen in advance, are entered into a drawing for a $500 cash prize sponsored by Swarovski Optik.

Monmouth County Audubon members will be counting birds on Sandy Hook from the observation platform overlooking Spermaceti Cove, across from the (now closed) Visitor Center parking lot, 1.8 miles north of the park entrance gate. The platform provides views of Sandy Hook bay, the surrounding holly forest,  and the surrounding salt marsh.

Participants are allowed to come and go from the circle—especially for the purpose of bringing food back into the circle—and the circle need not be occupied for the entire 24 hours. MCAS members will man their circle from 10:00 am until 5:00 pm. The public is welcome to stop by and count birds for as long as they like. Bring binoculars, and bring your own food and beverages, if desired.