Re: Outback Birds - BOP Watch

Subject: Re: Outback Birds - BOP Watch
From: "RAOU Conservation (Hugo Phillipps)" <>
Date: Tue, 12 Nov 1996 16:24:57 +1100 (EST)
Hi, Irene - just to respond to your query about BOP Watch on Birding-Aus.
You said:

>Some basic principles of the BOP Watch records were (1) only record birds seen 
>when travelling along in your vehicle (to try and prevent double counting) and 
>(2) records were only required to be kept for various geographical type zones 
>which, to me, were rather large.  I would have thought that smaller areas 
>would be more useful - perhaps an RAOU reader could post a note on this 

The idea behind BOP Watch was to have a survey that was easily carried out
from cars.   That is why the zones zigzag along latitude/longitude lines and
can be identified quickly on maps.  There could have been more zones, but it
would have increased the number of times that BOP Watchers would have to
check maps to work out zone boundaries and start new sheets.  So it is all a
compromise between convenience and fine detail - we have found that the more
complicated a survey is the fewer participants we get.

The 61 BOP Watch zones roughly define habitat regions.  Actually, they are
not radically different from the more recent IBRA (Interim Biogeographical
Regionalisation of Australia) regions (of which there are 80).  The results
of the first BOP Watch have been largely analysed, and we hope to see some
publication of results early next year.  One thing that showed up over the
five years of BOP Watch 1 was a consistent decline in numbers of
Square-tailed Kites.

Will Steele, the Coordinator, says of BOP Watch 2 that he has sent
information kits so far to about 500 people, and received 1600 completed
sheets back from around 120 BOP counters.  More people are needed - and they
can call Will at the contacts below, or email
<> for more information.  If you can identify
raptors, you can BOP Watch.  It is one of the simpler surveys that we have
organised, but also one of the most valuable - it may well identify some
raptor declines early enough to do something about them.

Cheers,  Hugo.

Hugo Phillipps,
RAOU Conservation & Liaison,
Australian Bird Research Centre,
415 Riversdale Road,
Hawthorn East, VIC 3123, Australia.
Tel: +61 3 9882 2622. Fax: +61 3 9882 2677.
Email: <>
The Virtual Emu:

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