During the bird count guests were able to join in for the first time during Magical Moments. At Disney’s Pop Century Resort and Art of Animation Resort guests had a chance to count hooded mergansers in a pond between the resorts, in addition to blue herons, tri-colored herons, snowy egrets, and more.
The bird count was guided by Disney’s Animal Programs bird experts and more than 24,000 birds were counted representing 119 species at the Walt Disney World resort and surrounding areas.
This count sets a new record for the most birds and species observed in the last four years.
Participants counted new species this year included black-bellied whistling ducks, common goldeneye, ruddy duck, field sparrow, and the painted bunting.
Disney’s Holiday Bird Count was modeled after the Audubon Christmas Bird Count which started in 1900. The data collected allows scientists to follow trends in bird population over time.
The Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund has provided more than $6.1 million to support bird conservation around the world since 1995.