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eBirding, damn right it's competitive

posted by Tim Avery at
on Friday, February 24, 2012 

At the onset of February, fellow Utah Birder Carl Ingwell challenged other Utah Birders to submit as many eBird checklists as possible during the month of February.  February is typically a slow month for birding in Utah, so this is quite a challenge. Well here it is and the final week of February is upon us and as of this morning Utah sits at 24th in terms of most checklists submitted for the month--that's one spot higher than we were at the beginning of the month.  So what happened?  I thought for sure we would jump into maybe 16th, or 13th--but to no avail we remain at the bottom of the top 25.  Like BYU during their luckiest of Football seasons, or Utah during an off year, we jsut couldn't move up in the rankings.

But alas, it doesn't matter--it's just a silly challenge.  I took it to heart though (As Barnabus Stinson would say, "Challenge Accepted"!) and made it my goal to submit as many checklists as possible this month.  As of right now that's 181 checklists in the past 23 days.  That's just under 1/2 as many as I submitted in all 0f 2011.  And because of Carl's challenge I'm sitting somewhere near the top of the list for submitted checklists in Utah this year... well take a look for yourself:

I'm not exactly killing it in the species department--but in the checklists department I am having a Ted Williams'esque run.  Well Utah Birders, with just a week to go it looks like there is some major catching up to be done--so challenge on--beat me and I will throw in an extra prize to whatever Carl had in mind!

But I'm not going down without a fight--I am going to submit at least 10 checklists a day till the end of the month (that's at least 60 more for those who aren't aware of the date).

Good eBirding to all--get out there and get those checklists entered.

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Blogger Ryan O'Donnell said...

Is there a way to make a list of the top eBirders for just one month in eBird, or do you have to take a screenshot or something at the end of January and then manually subtract that from totals at the end of February? I can see how many checklists I've submitted this month (43, or a little under an average of 2 per day), but I don't know how to compare that to other Utah birders.

February 24, 2012 at 10:52 AM  
Blogger Tim Avery said...

I don't think there is yet--but down the road who knows.

February 24, 2012 at 11:08 AM  
Blogger Kathiesbirds said...

If I was still living there I would help you out! I am an avid eBirder and have a few lists submitted from when I lived there in the early 2000's.

Your question about being able to find out how many species and checklists have been recorded intrigued me, so I went searching on eBird. I have never done this before, but I discovered there is a way for you to find out numbers, but not names , like you can in the "Top 100" link. Just go to the View and Explore Data Tab, then look for the subtitle "Summary Observations". Underneath that you will see 2 links. Click "All Observations." From there you are given the option to create a report for any state and for the year, month, or week. You can select Utah, select which month you want, click "continue" and it will bring up the stats for you. Have fun!

February 24, 2012 at 3:26 PM  
Blogger CarlIngwell said...

@Ryan, I was just planning on going off the honor system. In eBird, you can check how many checklists you've submitted for the month in your "My eBird" tab.

@Tim, you can't win the prize because you never signed up for the contest. The only person that signed up was Oliver :). I decided to postpone the contest because of lack of interest. However, nice work! Since I doubt you will be beat, I'll have to take you out to dinner or something. I thought I was on a good clip, but I've only entered a bit under 100 checklists this month.

It's good to know that we hung around in the top 25, but without the help of Tim, myself, Eric Huish, and Norm and Gail Jenson, we would have slipped into the bottom 25, where we normally place.

It's been a good month, guys.

February 24, 2012 at 6:04 PM  
Blogger Tim Avery said...

@Carl: Blasphemy I say! I most certainly did "sign up" for the contest. I was first to say I was in--and from there hit the pavement running... er a, Birding I mean. How can you cancel a contest without giving notice? Nay! Oh well, I wasn't doing it to win, I was doing it for the data--and plan to continue through the year. Where will I end up? 1,000 lists? 1,250 lists? 1,500 lists? 2,000 lists??? I guess I will just have to keep plugging away and see where I end up. Your challenge was a great way to light a fire under my ass, and maybe a gentle prodding every month will help more and more people step up.

February 24, 2012 at 6:27 PM  
Blogger Kenny Frisch said...

@Carl: Blasphemy I say as well! I've dropped 90+ checklists this month already and will be up to 6th for the year once I get done posting my checklists today.

You know what Utah would be if I hadn't moved here? You would be looking up at New Hampshire. I bet you would like that Carl since you and your beard would fit right in there.

I'm just messing around. It's been great to help out Utah and I'm glad for your prodding to make my Ebird experience better.

February 24, 2012 at 6:52 PM  
Blogger Ryan O'Donnell said...

I just went back and re-read it, and I guess I misunderstood the original post (my fault). I thought that everyone who entered an average of at least one checklist per day was automatically in. My total for the month probably hasn't been much higher than the same month in previous years, but it's been an unusually busy month for me.

February 25, 2012 at 12:24 AM  

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