Inspired by Walt Disney’s vision to set aside nearly one-third of the resort property as a wildlife conservation area, Cast Members and their families took to the wilds, and the surrounding areas, to determine what birds are found in the Central Florida area during the winter. Cast Members were also able to interact with guests as they went about their volunteer duties, and shared tips on how guests can identify different bird species as well.
The event is modeled after the Audubon Society’s annual Christmas bird count, which has been taking place for over 100 years. Data collected from such studies enables scientists to study bird population trends over time, which in turn allows the scientists to determine how to best apply conservation efforts.
Volunteers came away with an astounding count of nearly 14,000 birds, representing 113 different species! After completing their work, some of the volunteer birders were greeted by a bird unique to the Disney area: Donald Duck.