Big Sit

Join us in June for the Three Rivers Parks Big Sit! Learn more about the birds in our different parks and count how many different species you see within a 12-hour period.

Event Details

What is it?

A Big Sit is an event where participants stay in one spot for a pre-determined time and keep track how many species of birds they see. Some Big Sits are very competitive and go for a full 24 hours. The Three Rivers Parks Big Sit is less about competition and more about education--everyone is invited to stop by the sites and learn about the birds of the area from participants.

Our Big Sit will be 12 hours long. Additional rules to the sit, simplified from the American Birding Association rules, are found below. Results of the bird species counted from the day will be posted online.

When is it?

Saturday, June 11, 2022, from 6 AM until 6 PM

Where is it?

Find a Sit Site on this map. If you want to join a Big Sit team and add your bird counts to the group's, contact the site coordinator on the map.

Big Sit Rules

  1. The Sit location can be made anywhere within a designated Three Rivers Park, but should be adjacent to a regularly used paved or turf trail
  2. Observations can only be made from within your pre-determined 25-foot (diameter) circle. A Big Sit sign and boundary flags will be provided.
  3. There’s no limit to how many people can occupy one circle (other than the obvious spatial limitations). Bring some chairs. Have a picnic or barbeque. Welcome passers-by and add their contributions to your list.
  4. If a bird is seen or heard from within the circle but is too distant to identify, the circle can be left to get a closer look/listen to confirm the bird’s identity. However, any new bird species seen or heard while confirming the original, can’t be counted unless it’s seen or heard from an “anchor” who stayed behind in your circle, or is seen by you when you return to your circle.
  5. Tally the number of species that you observe.
  6. Big Sit participants can work in shifts. No one person needs to be there throughout the whole Big Sit! The area can be left and returned to as frequently as desired, but you must be sure to return to the exact 25-foot diameter circle each time.
  7. The same circle must be used for the entire Big Sit.
  8. The Big Sit! will begin at 6 AM and end by 6 PM. The circle should have coverage from at least 8 AM to 4 PM.
  9. All Big Sit circles are encouraged to register with a site coordinator (found on this map) prior to the Sit and to input their results after the Sit is over. This is the best way for Big Sit circles to share their results.
  10. Each participant should strive to always maintain proper birding ethics.
  11. The sit may be cancelled or shortened if there is unsuitable weather.