- Associated Press - Tuesday, January 21, 2014

ITHACA, N.Y. (AP) - Organizers of the 17th annual Great Backyard Bird Count say they expect bird watchers from more than 100 countries to participate in this year’s event, Feb. 14-17.

The event is a joint project of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the National Audubon Society with partnership from Bird Studies Canada. Anyone in the world can participate by counting birds for at least 15 minutes on one or more days of the count and recording sightings at www.BirdCount.org .

Data from North American participants will help defined the magnitude of the southern influx of snowy owls this winter. Observations may also help show whether American crows are continuing to rebound after being hit hard by West Nile virus.

The count went global for the first time last year.

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