BirdTrack
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long-tailed titBirdtrack is not a survey as such. It is a website run by the BTO in conjunction with the RSPB, BWI and SOC.  You can report any bird that you see through Birdtrack even if you are not a member of the BTO, RSPB, BWI or SOC. 

The idea behind BirdTrack is that if you have been out birdwatching anywhere in Britain and Ireland, or simply watching birds in your garden, records of the birds you have seen (or indeed have not seen) can be useful data. Thus the scheme is year-round, and ongoing, and anyone with an interest in birds can contribute. Important results produced by BirdTrack include mapping migration (arrivals and departures) timings and monitoring scarce birds. The bird organisations  know very little about the timing of arrival and departure of winter visitors and this is just one area in which BirdTrack will provide useful information. There are also many scarce birds where the bird organisations would like to know much more about their populations.

The success of BirdTrack relies on your birdwatching lists. As a contributor you make a note of the birds you see, either out birdwatching or from the office or garden for example, and enter your daily observations on a simple-to-use web page. The bird organisations need to gather a large number of lists at all times of the year from throughout Britain and Ireland. The BTO prefers that complete lists of birds (all species seen and heard) be provided because the proportion of lists with a given species provides a good measure of frequency of occurrence that can be used for population monitoring. Incomplete lists and casual records can also be entered because they too build their understanding of populations, distributions and movements.  I have to admit that, up until now, I have only entered the occasional sighting but the information that you can pull out of the BTO Birdtrack database is amazing. For example I can, by one click, look at my 2012 year list.  Now it is not very long because I have not entered any complete lists, but I can also put in a species and see every report I have made of a sighting of that bird. This can not only be by way of a written record but also by way of a map.  It really is an incredible resource.

With your permission the records are made available to bird clubs so the Surrey County Recorder is able to go into Birdtrack and download all of the results for the County.  However to make life easier for the County Recorder please do not just put in a site name and nothing else to identify it.  Please ensure that a 6 figure grid reference is also included.

I am not going to repeat how you operate Birdtrack but provide below the link to the BTO website which explains how you register and how you then enter your results.

Click here for Birdtrack

If you have not used this resource yet please do so, you will be amazed at the information you can get from it.

 

 

 

 

 

© Penny Williams 2016