from the Field
Forward to Year 2 of the San Diego County Bird Atlas
Even before our first winter season of atlas field work draws to a close, the database of winter observations is substantial: 13,055 records from 220 squares. These are largely from the Christmas Bird Counts and blockbuster weekends, as well as some incidental observations, as the irregular distribution of squares with data on the map implies. If you see that we have received data from your square that you haven't sent, you can assume it is from one of these sources. Please remember, however, that as valuable as these sources are, it is the observations from participants committed to covering individual squares that will get us to our threshold goals.
Now is the time to send your winter-record form to us. We will enter the data in the computer and return the form to you so you can continue to use it next year. Even if you have made only one or two field trips to the square, please send the form now, as well as your field maps, as it's essential that we keep current with data entry. If people wait to send in their data until the end of the project, we will be buried, as well as out of touch with our progress. If your own record-keeping system makes it easier for you send us copies of your field notes of spreadsheets; just ensure that the data represent one square on a specific date.
Data from the last breeding season continue to trickle in. The map showing the status of our breeding data shows the bigger picture, including which squares have been adopted. A net gain of 12 since the last Wrenderings brings us to 304 of 479 squares adopted, 63.5%. A few observers have had to scale back their commitments, leaving squares L22, Oriflamme Canyon and N10 Miramar Reservoir, open. So anyone interested in these, as well as any other squares still lacking observers, please contact Phil or Ann. On the other hand, if you find yourself among the overcommitted, please don't feel guilty, but let us know right away so we can plan accordingly. The breeding-season database now stands at nearly 23,000 records, covering 141 squares. The number in which the threshold has been cleared stands at 11. With the help of each of you, we will advance rapidly during this coming breeding season.