New York State's Breeding Bird Atlas III

Hello Western New York Birders!

This page is designed to be a resource and guide for those of you who are interested in adding your "birding power" to the 5th and last year of the New York State Breeding Bird Atlas III Project. The project needs your help to complete its goals of collecting and updating statewide information on breeding birds, obtaining a metric of abundance for breeding birds, and investigating the habitat relations of breeding birds.

Currently, there are many areas (blocks) throughout the state that have little or no effort. In Western New York, the two major areas that need a lot of effort are within Cattaraugus and Allegany counties. We'll use this page to suggest blocks for birders to target.

Only 35% of the priority blocks in the state were completed by the end of 2023 and it's apparent we will not finish if we continue with the same approach. Consequently, we will be employing a different strategy in 2024. The Steering Committee for the project, in an effort to collect a strong representative sampling of the different habitats of our state, is asking us to focus only on INCOMPLETE   CE   BLOCKS. They would like as many CE blocks as possible to reach 15 HOURS OF EFFORT from MAY 15th - JULY 15th. Once 15 hours of atlasing has been achieved during this timeframe, the block will be considered complete and we're asked to move on to another incomplete CE block, regardless of # of codes, habitats, etc... The Steering Committee basically voted to trade intensive sampling for extensive sampling. Depth for breadth. In other words, having a smaller amount of effort in more blocks at the expense of spending more time per block. We are asked to focus on the big picture: statewide data.

You may question whether any atlasing effort before or after the core time period will count. In short, the answer is a resounding "YES"! We still want breeding codes, we still want people to visit all the major habitat types, and we still hope people will do owl surveys, woodcock surveys, and continue into August despite the May 15 – July 15 window for the 15-hour threshold.   ALL ATLAS EFFORT COUNTS!

In the near future, WNY's incomplete CE blocks will be posted below. In the meantime, you can visit the Atlas Completion Map to study areas near you that you might want to target: Atlas Completion Map ».

We hope you will join us in this enormous effort to gain a good sampling of bird data for our region!