Date: 5/12/19 1:38 pm From: world oceans <world.oceans7...> Subject: Re: [MDBirding] Nitpicking--Counting rules at borders in an "official" count
I enjoyed this posting and the replies it drew! Basically I think everyone
is correct.....the bird should be counted where it was when you observed
it. If you observe it moving into another county, you can count it in both.
If you hear it but are not sure where it is, I would use your best guess as
to location. If you hear/see it in both counties but are not sure if it is
the same bird, I think you can count it in both, but what I suggest is that
you document it with a note that says it could have been one or two birds.
Obviously there will be some situations where you cannot prove it one way
or the other.
My bottom line is that the scientific documentation is more important than
whether somebody gets to bolster their list. My personal feeling is that it
is more important to get the facts onto ebird than anywhere else. The ebird
folks do a great job of coordinating and verifying with various state
records committees and agencies, as far as I know. Unfortunately, many of
us birders sometimes record many sightings without many details, leaving a
lot of doubt as to how many birds were observed, and where they were! In
the interest of the birds, I am suggesting we try to be as scientifically
accurate as possible, but also accept the fact that a lot of birds have to
go unidentified or undocumented or miscounted.
My own favorite personal stories are the few times when (usually at low
altitude in an airplane) I have been able to see the same bird in three or
more different states (or even countries!) Phew!!......
On Sun, May 12, 2019 at 9:53 PM Marcia Balestri <mebalestri...>
> Is there a rule out there somewhere (didn’t find it in google) that
> explains how to count at border areas in an “official” count? I suppose
> there must be something written for the state or country borders (maybe
> not?), but what about county level?
> I live in a county with lots of good birding spots that borders 2 other
> counties and try to include these areas when I do a county count (like a
> May Count or a fall count) to share anything that is on the “other side” of
> the county line with the appropriate county coordinator. Can I count/share
> a bird that I hear in one county, but is physically sitting in the other
> county? I would think the answer to this would be no, since that would be
> double-counted. But what if I am only hearing it and can’t really tell
> which county it is actually sitting in or more importantly, I can’t tell
> whether it is 2 different birds or just 1 that just flew over to the “other
> side”. This doesn’t come up often as there are usually enough birds on both
> sides of the line to “share” between counties, but every now and then there
> are some head scratchers that can cost time trying to figure out what to
> do. Now I realize that the purpose is to try to get an accurate count, but
> we are rabid in Maryland about county listing (and counting) ;-), and some
> counters don’t like to share (just kidding, of course). So if there is
> some hard and fast written down rule somewhere, I would like to know it.
> And while I am here, just out of curiosity, when you are just counting for
> your own list and standing in one county and hear or see a bird in another
> county, which county do you put it in? Or do you stand there until if flies
> into your county and count it on both county lists?
> Marcia Balestri
> Worcester County, Maryland
> “...ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge: it is
> those who know little, and not those who know much, who so
> positively assert that this or that problem will never be solved
> by science." Charles Darwin, 1871
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