Twitchers heaven!

To: "Katarina Stenman" <>
Subject: Twitchers heaven!
From: "Dave Torr" <>
Date: Tue, 16 Jan 2007 08:20:41 +1100
I agree that such systems are not primarily a scientific tool - although
they can provide some information. One issue is that rarities tend to be
over-reported - for example at my local site I see that a great rarity that
turned up last year is reported on 3% of all reports, whereas birds I see
every time I visit are reported only around 50% of the time.

But for those who want to try and form a picture as to what is in an area so
they can plan a birding trip these systems are very useful. As to not
finding much data - Eremaea has around 270,000 observations in Australia and
Birdata over 5 MILLION. I am not sure about Birdpedia. So there is a wealth
of data there.

Of course - as I said - we are all free to record (or not record) our
observations in whatever way we choose, but I think in general it is more
useful if Australian sightings are recorded in an Australian system - and
Swedish birds in a Swedish system (I note Eremaea has 218 observations made
in Sweden!). I doubt whether anyone visiting Sweden would look to Eremaea
for information on what they are likely to see in Sweden - and I doubt if
anyone visiting Australia would rely on Worldtwitch to plan their Australian

Please do not take it personally - I have no direct interest in any of the
three systems I mentioned and I have used all three - although most of my
observations remain (I regret) on my own PC!

On 16/01/07, Katarina Stenman <> wrote:

Hi again all out there

Just to clarify a few things about the site. It does not try to become
a scientific atlas tool or a trip report archive.
For me and many others it is a way to keep
records about what I have seen and where I saw
them.  It can be used just for you personal
fun!!! ;-) I doubt that any serious scientist
would put too much trust in a mishmash of
sightings published on the web without any
rarities committee check-up. However I did check
out the ones you listed (Eremaea, Birdpedia and
Birdata) and I doubt that they can be of any use
at the moment. Not many reports or maybe I failed
while searching. For example the mapping tool is
great but not useful if someone want to keep a record of their lifer
Taxonomy and spelling of names is always a
problem. However as long as the scientific names
are following a published list - who really needs
the common names? And I am not trying to be
snobbish but it is true. Always thought that
botanists can do it so why not birders?

Keep on twitching despite the fact that the
discussed site not is proudly Australian


At 00:53 2007-01-15, you wrote:
>Just had a look at the site - I am all in favour of people publishing
>lists online so that other birders can build up a picture of what is
>being seen in various places. But we already have three online services
>Australia (Eremaea, Birdpedia and Birdata) which is probably two too
>so adding another one seems to only make matters worse. Of course all
>birders are free to do what they like and use what they like and I don't
>want to knock any service, but I would certainly hope that anyone seeking
>publish their sightings would do it in one of the three Aussie services,
>which are more likely to be referred to by anyone doing research.
>I checked the site out and it had some fairly strange names - such as
>Spotted Emu.
>On 12/01/07, Katarina Stenman <> wrote:
>>Hi all
>>This is a short promotional email for all of you
>>out there that like to keep track of your birding
>>adventures. Worldtwitcher
>> is a new
>>web site that gives you FREE access to bird and
>>mammal lists for almost all countries in the
>>world. Even subspecies are in most cases listed.
>>You can also add personal lists for the backyard,
>>latest Tassie holiday or year 2006. Pictures can
>>be added too. There are also features that can
>>give you the list of your "unseen" birds in a
>>country or the combined Asian list if you have
>>been to several countries and would like to know
>>the total. Of course you see a lifer list when
>>you have added all your sightings. Printouts are
>>possible. Ranking lists of totals and countries
>>are available to compare with your friends. Of
>>course you can choose to hide all your lists and just keep it privately.
>>Worldtwitcher is run by a Swedish guy, Nicklas
>>Strömberg with some support from the Swedish
>>Club300 and the Ornithological Society. When
>>talking about bird lists there are always
>>problems about what to put on the lists as there
>>are always new splits and lumps and different
>>opinions about names. This web site follows
>>"Clements" and to some this might be strange but
>>that is the authority that most European birders
>>follow. No other options are available. It is
>>still under construction (version 2 just
>>released) and of course there are errors and
>>bugs. But if you find anything faulty just send
>>Nicklas an email and he will try to sort it out.
>>Hope that you join this great system and start
>>twitching. See you on the Aussie list........
>>Katarina Stenman

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