Birds Wintering in Urban Landscapes



PSBO’s Birds Wintering in Urban Landscapes project focuses on how urban Puget Sound supports the songbirds that spend the winter here.



During this project, we are color-banding Black-capped and Chestnut-backed Chickadees, Dark-eyed Juncos, and Fox Sparrows in backyards and parks in study sites around greater Seattle. We hope to answer the following research questions:

  • For which species is the urban winter habitat important?
  • What breeding populations are represented?
  • How do wintering birds use the urban landscape?
  • What role do backyards, parks, and invasive plants play?

This projects aims to enroll yard owners with registered backyard habitat as hosts for banding sites and relies on citizen scientists – including youth and school kids – for banding and re-sighting. Through this project, native plant landscapers are able to document birds’ use of fruits and berries in their yards, and see how birds live and use plant resources in their neighborhoods.


We are no longer banding birds for this study, but we do need bird sighters year-round!

The Birds Wintering in Urban Landscapes project is made possible by a partnership of the Puget Sound Bird Observatory, the Shoreline Community Wildlife Habitat Project, and the Lake Forest Park Stewardship Foundation.