It was in 1988 that a group of people interested in birdwatching met for the first time, under the initiative of Mr. Jacques Bonnette. After obtaining the necessary authorizations, the Club des observateurs d’oiseaux de Brome-Missisquoi was founded and held its first annual general meeting in September 1988. The first directors were Jacques Bonnette (Chair), Bertrand Hamel, Marcel Poulin, Denis Messier, Jean-Jacques Hamel, Miles Fortin Jr. and Rachel Fleury.

In 1990, the Club des observateurs d’oiseaux de Brome-Missisquoi changed its name to COBM, the Club des ornithologues de Brome-Missisquoi Inc. taking the Northern Cardinal as its emblem. The COBM then became affiliated with the Association québécoise des groupes d’ornithologues (AQGO) and in September, adopted a new communication tool, the bulletin L’Info-Oiseaux, still published three times a year.

Our Bird Emblem. Photo credit Suzanne Pellerin.

Over the years, COBM has organized several hundred field activities and some 50 conferences. It works to raise awareness in the region by writing in the local newspapers, holding several exhibitions, offering introductory courses for children, etc. COBM is also involved in species preservation by working to reintroduce Eastern Bluebirds in Quebec through the installation of some 100 nesting boxes on its territory. These boxes are checked to this day. Since its founding, COBM has been collaborating in data collection through its participation in the Christmas Bird Count (CBC), the ÉPOQ database (now eBird Québec), and by closely monitoring threatened species breeding in the region. It also contributed to the Second Atlas of Breeding Birds of Southern Quebec (2010-2014).

The COBM also worked on the creation of the Jacques-Bonnette Natural Park, named in honour of its founding president. The park, inaugurated in 2012, includes a trail of about one kilometer favorable to birdwatching. At the park entrance, a poster designed by the Club informs visitors about the winged fauna that can be observed on the trails.

COBM is always proud to contribute to the advancement of ornithology by participating in various regional and national dossiers.