- a searchable repository
- a tool for managing your surveys
- a place for collaboration, e.g. Partners in Flight or regional surveys.
- The official site for National Wildlife Refuge point counts.
A method for conducting standardized bird surveys so that you can compare numbers of birds
among sites or years. Learn more about the point count method
Who can use it?
It's a public site - anyone can use it!
As of January 2006, the states mapped in blue (left) have refuges, parks or forests
managing surveys in the Bird Point Count Database.
Who manages it?
This site was built through collaboration among USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center,
the USFWS National Wildlife Refuge System, American Bird Conservancy, and many individuals.
Further Background & Credits
The goal of this point count repository is to:
- Provide easy data entry and access to everyone, while providing appropriate security controls.
- Accommodate count data from multiple sources, allowing for small differences in protocols, such as:
- Counts at different times of year: breeding, winter, or migration counts.
- Counts differing in time intervals (3 vs. 5 minutes, for example) or radii.
- Counts that adjust for bias, such as distance techniques
- Store vegetation information associated with points.
- Enforce data quality control through validation routines and through distributed responsibility.
Benefits of centralization
As data from scattered sources are incorporated here, data users and data managers will both benefit.
- Results may be combined and compared over large areas, e.g. by region or BCR, if data are from compatible studies.
- Count data will be easily and rapidly distributed.
- There will be lower long-term costs associated with central management: point count programs just starting or setting up data management can start with little cost, redirecting resources to field work.
- Maintenance and backup will be performed at a single site where database is stored.
- Standard browser interface will reduce training time for data entry personnel.
- Data entered on-line will be immediately available, providing a tangible result that will help maintain volunteer effort.
In other words, conservation uses of point counts will continue to grow, as users have immediate access to large data sets that can help focus management and research efforts aimed at particular problems or species-specific issues.
Who is involved?
Data Sources. In the spirit of Partners in Flight, the database was built to store data from anywhere in North America. Data sources may include counts on US Fish and Wildlife Service refuges, private lands such as timber company lands, Important Bird Areas (IBAs), US Forest Service forests, Bureau of Land Management or other federal lands, state lands such as parks or wildlife management areas, and so on. Anyone conducting standard point counts may manage their data using the web interface.
Users. Anyone with access to the web will be able to view and retrieve data. Data retrieval is limited now but will continue to expand as the database grows. Users will include wildlife and land managers, researchers, or bird conservation groups.
Contributors. Many people currently working with point counts have provided comments, sample data, copies of their field protocols, or other valuable input that will help make this database useful for a broad base of users. For this version, many people provided feedback over several years of use and greatly improved the quality of the database as a whole. A few stand out for their patience and significant contributions: Hal Laskowski, Shawchyi Vorisek, Laura Burford, Terry Doyle, Jill Oertley, Mike Roedel, Scott Somershoe, Laurie Wunder, Guy Merolle, and Mark Mendelson. Hal Laskowski played a major role in making version 2 happen, and coordinated assitance from the National Wildlife Refuge System: Ken Sturm, Gary Huschle, Pam Dryer, Melinda Knutson, Kate O'Brien, Holly Gaboriault, Paul Hess, Randy Dettmers, Don Schwab, Maurice Mills, Susan Talbott and others.
People who provided input or feedback on version 1 of the database include (alphabetically): Brad Andres, Grant Ballard, Jon Bart, Patti Barber, Anne Black, David DeSante, Sam Droege, Pam Dryer, Steven Fancy, John Gallegos, Lamar Gore, Paul Hamel, John Hoffland, Mark Huff, Ron Lambeth, Hal Laskowski, Tony Leukering, Jim Mattsson, David Mehlman, David Pashley, Diane Penttila, Bruce Peterjohn, C.J. Ralph, Terry Rich, Mike Roedel, Alan Schultz, and Margaret Trani, Shawchyi Vorisek.
Sponsors. The database is housed on computers at Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, and was built in cooperation with the USFWS National Wildlife Refuge System and the American Bird Conservancy.
The Team. Mark Wimer, Bruce Peterjohn, Ovais Aslam, Anna Ott, Naoko Griffin, Allison Sussman.
- - March 2006, release of version 2.0