Frequently Asked Questions

Why 1-mile?

We’ve found 1 square mile to be the best combination of habitat and efficiency. 1 square mile provides a good sample of an area’s dominant habitat types, but is also easy to survey in just 1-2 hours. Leaving you plenty of time to move on to other squares or your favorite birding areas.

Why are some squares a different color/named after birds?

You may notice a few Hotspot Squares are a different color than the rest. These are our Hot 300 squares. They represent about 11% of all Hotspot Squares in Oregon. If you find the total number of Hotspots in the state to be overwhelming, you can focus on the Hot 300 squares instead. You might notice some of them are named after some pretty exciting species. The names do not mean we expect that species to occur in its Square; it’s simply a fun way to inspire volunteer interest. How many Hot 300 squares can you visit by the end of the project?

Are these squares in eBird?

Yes! Each of these Hotspot Squares is also a Hotspot within eBird (they all are named: “oregon 2020–Name of square”. e.g., oregon 2020–McFadden Marsh). Go to Explore Hotspots in eBird to see what birds have been seen already in the Hotspot Square. However, please do NOT select the Hotspot in eBird as the location for your checklists. We ask that you create a specific personal location for each of your checklists within the Hotspot.

What about private lands?

We have arranged Hotspot Squares to contain at least one publicly accessible road or public lands. Many of the sections also have private land. Our selection of these sites does not imply that we have permission to visit ALL lands within a Hotspot Square. Please bird only on the public land portions unless you arrange for permission to get on private property.

Click here to return to the Hotspot Square information page