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Elimination of paper banding schedules after September 30, 2012

March 20, 2012

When the BBL initiated the electronic submission of banding data in 1999, the banding community was informed that the BBL would not be able to continue accepting paper banding schedules indefinitely. Banders were urged to move to electronic data submission and we are very grateful to every bander that has successfully made this transition. Unfortunately, as a result of recent budget reductions, the BBL will no longer be able to accept data submitted on paper banding schedules, word processing banding schedules, BAND OPS files, or Computer Generated Schedule (CGS) Program schedules/files after October 30, 2012. If you currently have unsubmitted data in any of these formats, you should send these data to the BBL as soon as possible. Data submitted in these formats after October 30 will be returned to you and only electronic files from the Band Manager software or BANDIT version 2.0 or higher will be accepted after that date. If any of your subpermittees use one of these formats to submit their banding data directly to the BBL, please inform them of these impending changes and the need to begin using the BANDIT software.

This notice provides a 6-month transition period to an entirely electronic data submission process. If you need to obtain the current version of the BANDIT software, it can be downloaded directly from the BBL website at:


Or, the BBL can send you a copy of the software on a CD-ROM. The BBL operates a BANDIT help desk to assist banders in setting up and operating the software on their computers. This help desk can be accessed by telephone (301-497-5566) or through email ( If you have any questions about this software, the BBL strongly encourages you to use these resources for assistance.

If you want to continue banding birds and are unable to use the current version of the BANDIT software, then you will need to find someone who is willing to electronically submit data for you. The BBL might be able to connect you with someone who is willing to provide this assistance, although there a fee may be charged for these services. Please contact Karen Jones at the BBL (301-497-5794; email: to indicate that you are looking for someone to electronically submit your banding data and she will provide you with more information concerning your options. If you or one of your subpermittees are willing to electronically manage banding data for other banders, please contact Karen Jones to indicate your willingness to provide that assistance.

The BBL regrets having to take these steps and will try to provide the necessary assistance to successfully transition to the electronic submission of your banding data.

Bruce Peterjohn
Bird Banding Laboratory

Bandit version 3.01 Released

On November 22, 2011 the BBL replaced Bandit version 3.0 with version 3.01. Originally 3.01 was intended to fix a few very minor problems we found in v. 3.0, but other changes, both within the BBL and outside the BBL resulted in many other improvements that extended the time it took to be sure we had a good product. The changes from 3.0 to 3.01 are many fewer than from 2.01 to 3.0, but are significant enough that we encourage all users to upgrade. You may read more and download it at:

Eliminating Paper Certificates of Appreciation

For bird bands reported to the BBL beginning August 1, 2011, the BBL will no longer be sending paper Certificates of Appreciation to the person finding the band. Certificates will only be sent in an electronic format. If an email address is provided at the time of the band report, then an email message will be sent with an attached electronic certificate as soon as the banding data are available. The BBL has also established a link on where the person reporting a band can provide their name and band number to download the electronic certificate when it becomes available. The BBL regrets not being able to continue the practice of sending paper Certificates of Appreciation, but budget reductions necessitate an end to this practice.