Illawarra Birders

The Illawarra Birders Region for New Year Twitch and Big Year

Each year we conduct a New Year Twitch, where individuals or teams record as many bird species as possible between 12AM Jan 1 and 12AM Jan2.

There is also an annual Big Year Competition, in which individuals record as many species as possible in a calander year.

The map below shows the borders where the birds must be recorded. It includes the offshore area.

New Year Twitch

Below are the rules for the 2024 New Year Twitch. Whilst there are no prizes, a number of members try to beat their previous record, and bragging rights are worth heaps! Have a fun day and drive safely.

1. The duration of the Twitch is the 24 hours of 1 January 2024, starting and ending at midnight.

2. All bird species counted must be seen and/or heard alive and in the wild, and observed within the Illawarra and surrounding area, defined as 6 Council areas: Wollongong, Shellharbour, Kiama, Wingecarribee, Wollondilly, and Shoalhaven.

3. Sightings from within Tallwarra Wetlands MAY NOT be included in the twitch.

4. You may enter the competition as an individual or team but not both. If entering as a team more than 50% of team members must see or hear each bird and be able to identify it. For example in teams of 2 both must positively identify the bird, in teams of 3, two must positively identify the bird and so on. The team size cannot change once the twitch starts. So for example in a team of 3, 2 must always see the bird even if 1 person retires from the competition part way through the day.

5. Birds may be identified by sight or call, but playback MAY NOT be used.

6. Records should be submitted to Terrill Nordstrom ( by Sunday 7 January 2024, stating the location that each bird was seen. An eBird trip report is the easiest way to do this.

7. For eBird users there is no requirement to update eBird until after the competition, then please share with 1803.

8. All records submitted will be subject to scrutiny by the Records Officer and/or Terrill Nordstrom. Their decision will be final.