At 08:12 PM 11/24/2009 Roaminoz Crew wrote:
I'm wondering if anyone has heard of and/or used the database
as put out by Bluebird Technology.
I've played with the trial version. I like it for the most part.
The trial version doesn't allow many entries, so I tested by
entering data for a couple days at home and a couple days from
my trip to Australia earlier this year. A lot of birding
databases fall down to varying degrees when asked to deal with
foreign trips. This one seems to handle that relatively well as
long as you set the default authority to "the World (Clements)".
If you set the default to something else, some of the summaries
only end up including the species on that particular list. Even
if you set the default to the world list though, you can still
use whichever authority you like for your actual entries. In my
testing, I used Christidis & Boles. for the Australian entries
and the ABA for the US ones. The database is smart enough to
deal with species whose names are different in different places.
It knows that a "European Starling" in the US is the same
species as a "Common Starling" in Australia.
Some of the things I like about this database include
hierarchical locations, ease of entry, the ability to attach
pictures to the entries and the ability to export data as a csv
file. It also has the ability to export to eBird, which is an
online database commonly used in North America, but not to other
the various other online databases.
There were two things that looked like I'd like them but that I
had problems with during my testing. The database supposedly has
the ability to add additional data fields both to the entries
and to the individual species data within the entries. I got
that to work for the entries as a whole without a problem. I
could add the additional fields for the individual sightings
within the entry, but I couldn't make those or the other
optional fields show on the screen in my test database. The
optional fields did show when I looked at the same database that
came with the trial version, so I may have missed something
there. My other issue was with the supposed ability to include
subspecies data. Choosing subspecies works well when using
Clements as the authority but doesn't seem to work using the ABA
list and isn't even available as an option with the C&B list. I
prefer to keep subspecies data where possible, but using the
Clements list for entries is cumbersome.
I don't like the inability to adjust the species within the
selected authority and if I'm going to pay for a database
program, I'd really like it to be able to record my non-bird
sightings as well. I also don't like not being able to choose
species by their Latin names. That's not something I'd want to
do a lot of, but sometimes it is hard to remember what the
"correct" common name for a bird is in a given place. I also
don't see any way to import data from any other database. It
does look like allowing the entry of other wildlife and
importing are two of the things they intend to add soon, so some
of these concerns may be dealt with in the next version.
Reading, PA, USA
To unsubscribe from this mailing list,
send the message:
(in the body of the message, with no Subject line)