Help with one of New Zealand's longest running citizen science projects

The Birds New Zealand Beach Patrol Scheme started in 1951 (although some records date from 1943) and for more than 60 years has aimed to systematically document the identity, location and numbers of seabirds found dead on New Zealand beaches. Regular beach patrols by members of Birds New Zealand provides a unique long-term record and the data collected has helped to establish the occurrence and to some extent the distribution of more than 110 seabird species in New Zealand coastal waters.

It has also provided information leading to an improved understanding of the seasonal movements, migration and causes of seabird deaths. Over 25,000 records have been collected by patrolling our beaches and recording any dead birds found, and members are now coordinating the data entry of these records.

We welcome the interest of members of Birds New Zealand to help enter data from the scanned cards into an online database. This approach will ensure that the database and data analysis is kept up-to-date. You can help to make this new system effective if you have the inclination, some time and a computer at home that is connected to the internet.

Data entry can be done anywhere at any time if you have access to the internet. If you would like to help, please contact Ian Armitage, Project Coordinator (

One of the earliest beach survey cards, collected on 17 March 1943, at Ohariu Bay, Wellington.


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