Date: 1/2/20 6:21 am
From: Bryan H <bghenson23...>
Subject: Re: [MDBirding] Re: eBird and MD BBA3
Here are my suggestions on Atlasing from a participant perspective:


1. eBird - this is the main way atlas data is collected, use it - it has
great maps as the data comes together
2. Breeding codes - add them to your checklists (it's pretty easy to
select them)
3. Field notes - take notes anytime you think you see breeding behavior
- these support the codes and help the folks looking to validate the data
later
4. Change to the portal - if the list isn't entered into the portal it
won't make it into the atlas - reviewers might catch it later (if you added
breeding codes), but you need to do it on any list with breeding behavoir
5. Block boundaries - learn where the blocks begin and end and which
ones are priority blocks - stationary counts will figure that out for you
automatically when you add to the portal, traveling, you need to account
for which blocks you are in
6. Safe dates - learn them, but document any breeding behavior (did I
mention field notes) for anything outside too - part of the project is
figuring out any changes to breeding dates
7. Talk to others about the BBA* - you'll find lots of homeowners and
photographers that will tell you about owls and hawks and other birds they
have found nests for
8. Nocturnal surveys - do these - they are fantastic for getting to hear
owls (and nightjars possibly)
9. Travel - getting to under-birded blocks is important - teaming up
with others can make this very sucessful
10. Priority species - some species are of extra interest - see the
handbook -
https://s3.amazonaws.com/is-ebird-wordpress-prod-s3/wp-content/uploads/sites/80/2019/12/FORM_MDDCBBA3_AtlaserHandbook_Dec2019_V1.pdf
11. Patience - observing breeding behavior involves lingering and
observing birds longer

Benefits of participating:

1. Going to areas you may never have birded - I've explored areas around
me that I had never visited and found some great habitats I've gone back to
many times
2. Owling - nocturnal surveys are awesome - listening to owls is great -
at one spot, we had 4 screech owls pop up a few feet away from us
3. Learning more about bird's nests - we found a nest during a night
walk and it turned out to be a Red-eyed Vireo nest - before I never would
have recognized it, now I know it
4. Special sightings - some of us followed some Peregrine Falcon
sightings and found an eyrie locally - the pictures of the baby falcons
when they were banded are terribly cute
5. Watching and learning breeding behaviors is fun
6. For the listers - you can track how many species you have confirmed
and number of blocks you have contributed to

* I've gotten reports of Great Horned Owls, Barred Owls, Mississippi Kites
through homeowners and photographers

Hope this helps,
Bryan Henson
Sterling, VA

On Thu, Jan 2, 2020 at 8:56 AM John McKitterick <john.mckitterick...>
wrote:

> Mike:
>
> You should definitely submit any breeding observations through the atlas
> portal, regardless of where in Maryland or DC you are birding. One of the
> neat things about using eBird for the Atlas is that we can all contribute
> to the effort whenever we are out birding in MD/DC. The Atlas uses the
> block leads not to control who is atlasing the blocks, but to ensure that
> the level of effort is consistent in each block throughout the state. We
> want each block to be atlased with at least a minimum number of hours of
> effort, and achieving that is one of the main responsibilities of the block
> leads.
>
> As far as which portal to use goes, if you know you are atlasing, then
> obviously you should use the atlas portal. On the other hand, if you think
> you won't be gathering any useful breeding data, you might set your portal
> to the regular eBird portal. And then if you do see or hear breeding
> evidence, you have two options. One is to stop your current eBird list,
> submit it, and start up a new one using the Atlas portal to record those
> codes. The other is to record the breeding code in your current eBird list,
> and then once you've submitted the list you can edit the list on eBird to
> change the portal after the fact. I don't think you can change the portal
> on a submitted list through the smartphone app, so you will have to
> remember to do it when you get home and have access to a browser.
>
> --John McKitterick
> Columbia, MD
> VP, MOS
>
>
> On Thu, Jan 2, 2020, 8:21 AM 'Mike Bowen' via Maryland & DC Birding <
> <mdbirding...> wrote:
>
>> A related question: For the duration of the BBA in Maryland/DC, should I
>> use the MD-DC BBA portal for any and all my birding in MD and DC, even
>> though most of it will necessarily be in blocks assigned to others and
>> likely will not contain any breeding information
>>
>> Mike Bowen, Montgomery County
>>
>> D. H. Michael Bowen
>> 8609 Ewing Drive
>> Bethesda, Maryland 20817
>> Phone/fax: (301) 530-5764
>>
>>
>> On Thursday, January 2, 2020, 08:02:02 AM EST, 'Jim Nelson' via Maryland
>> & DC Birding <mdbirding...> wrote:
>>
>>
>> One more thing. At the bottom of the eBird homepage is a link to a page
>> about "Regional portals and collaborators" The Virginia Breeding Bird
>> Atlas portal is on that list (MD does not appear yet, I suspect because the
>> portals page hasn't been updated). At the top of that webpage it says --
>> "eBird is available throughout the world. In addition to the core eBird
>> site we have several regional portals, which are managed by local partners
>> and provide local information and birding expertise. When visiting a region
>> or planning a visit to that region, we encourage you to check these sites.
>> These applications are fully integrated so when you enter records into
>> eBird, they immediately show up in each portal (and vice versa)."
>>
>> To test this, when I clicked on the VA eBird Atlas link there, I got a
>> screen that shows my stats through that portal -- 6 checklists, 4 species
>> confirmed as breeding (based on codes I used in eBird), etc. When I
>> clicked on "My eBird" in that portal I see my total stats, and when I click
>> on "Manage My Checklists" I get only the 6 checklists I submitted through
>> that portal.
>>
>> Then going back to my regular eBird portal (the one we all use), those 6
>> checklists are in my list under "Manage My Checklists" with all the other
>> checklists I have submitted.
>>
>> Jim Nelson
>>
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Gail Mackiernan <katahdinss...>
>> To: Bryan H <bghenson23...>
>> Cc: Maryland & DC Birding <mdbirding...>
>> Sent: Thu, Jan 2, 2020 7:00 am
>> Subject: Re: [MDBirding] Re: eBird and MD BBA3
>>
>> Also, if a checklist is entered on the BBA portal, does it also
>> automatically appear in your personal My eBird account?
>>
>> Gail Mackiernan
>> Colesville
>>
>> Sent from my iPad
>>
>> On Jan 2, 2020, at 6:46 AM, Bryan H <bghenson23...> wrote:
>>
>> The guidance in VA (which may well differ from the MD guidance) was to
>> only submit checklists using the BBA Portal if they contained breeding
>> codes/data. My understanding for the rationale was that otherwise when
>> doing quality checks on checklists, they would have to wade through a lot
>> of checklists that had no breeding data to realize that one or two
>> checklists (for GHOW for example) were missing breeding codes.
>>
>> I have not looked through the MD/DC BBA documentation to see what the
>> correct guidance is, but the documentation can be found here:
>> https://ebird.org/atlasmddc/about
>>
>> Hope that helps,
>> Bryan Henson
>> Sterling, VA
>>
>> On Wednesday, January 1, 2020 at 11:39:48 AM UTC-5, Tyler Bell wrote:
>>
>> There are virtually no breeding birds right now other than owls and Bald
>> Eagle (crossbills could be but this isn't a year for them). So, unless you
>> have something that qualifies as probable or confirmed, it won't matter. If
>> you're familiar with safe dates, you'll know that most birds aren't of
>> concern until April or May at the earliest. I'm not sure if you go back and
>> change it but there's no reason why it wouldn't just move the data from the
>> regular to the BBA database.
>>
>> Also, if you use eBird on a computer, please use the BBA portal:
>>
>> https://ebird.org/atlasmddc/ map <https://ebird.org/atlasmddc/map>
>>
>> This is all new to most of us. Virginia is well into their BBA so anyone
>> familiar with VA data, it would be nice to have any clarification!
>>
>> Tyler Bell
>> <jtyle......>
>> California, Maryland
>>
>>
>> On Wednesday, January 1, 2020, 11:00:06 AM EST, Scott Young <
>> <wsy......> wrote:
>>
>>
>> Thanks for the reminder. I have 2 questions:
>>
>>
>> 1. Can you add them to the MD BBA from the computer browser/eBird site?
>> 2. Can you change the portal after submission without having to delete
>> and re-enter data?
>>
>> Thank you,
>>
>> Scott Young
>> Giathersburg, MD
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