Date: 1/8/20 11:04 am
From: Gabriel Foley <mddcbba3...>
Subject: [MDBirding] MD-DC Breeding Bird Atlas Portal
Hi everyone,

I have had a number of people ask me when to use the Atlas eBird portal ( as opposed to general eBird ( and how 'safe
dates' fit into this Atlas, so I thought I would send out a message here.

If you haven't read the Atlas Handbook yet, I would encourage you to do so.
There is a lot of useful information in there.

You should submit checklists to the Atlas when you have a breeding code in
a checklist, or when you are submitting a nocturnal checklist. You can find
instructions for using the portal (on the website and on the app) at

Safe dates are a date range for each species that indicate when migrants
are likely to be absent from Maryland and DC. Within these date ranges, you
can use 'Possible status' codes, including Habitat (code H) and Singing
(code S). The further outside of a species' safe dates you are, the more
cautious you should be using codes that are relatively weak evidence of
breeding. For example, Hooded Mergansers are displaying to each other right
now. This could be classified as a Display (code C), but many of these
individuals will migrate further north to breed. Using that code in
January, well before they intend to nest, would create a misleading map of
their breeding in Maryland and DC. You can find safe dates at

Hope this helps clear things up!

Gabriel Foley
North Bethesda, MD

**Note new official work email and phone number. Please update your contact

*Gabriel J. Foley*, M.Sc.
Atlas Coordinator
Maryland & DC Breeding Bird Atlas 3
North Bethesda, MD
<mddcbba3...> | 202-681-4733
Pronouns: he/him/his

@mddcbba3 <>
<> [image:]
@birdnirdfoley <>

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