Seventh graders at the Village recently explored the amazing maps and graphs of e-bird.org. Each student was trying to discover the movement patterns of an Idaho bird, using observation data. We discovered a treasure trove of information to dig into, barely touching the possibilities. Our main explorations utilized Species Maps and Line Graphs. Students learned what e-map means by "frequency" and "abundance". With the species maps, students could look for seasonal differences in frequency data, inferring long distance migration patterns when high frequency patterns moved from regions in Central and South America to regions in North America, including Canada and Alaska. We asked more particular questions with the Line Graphs. We could search up to 5 birds at a time in this tool, then choose a state, and narrow down to county level. We wanted to know how Ada County birds moved between seasons in Ada County. Using these tools we discovered some species were frequently observed by birders, but only in small abundance, or low numbers. Although American robin seemed like a ubiquitous U.S. bird when looking at species maps, we found that the peak counts (abundance) of birds in Ada county were in the winter months, and the birds all but left the valley after breeding, for the month of August. We inferred a short-distance migration to the higher elevations where berries were ripening, before robins returned again in fall. Students were challenged to ask deeper questions with these tools, then to try to write their own paragraph, describing the migration patterns of their bird. This was an engaging activity, coupled with a paper collage project for service learning. Thanks Heidi for challenging us to explore this database!