Three ways to record with WWBIC
Online Wildlife Recording
Our new preferred method to receive records. There are drop down species lists and a map to locate the record. A log-in is required and first time users will need to register. As you enter records, you can view your own records on the map and download them from the “My Live Results” report.
Send us an E-mail
You can attach a photograph to aid identification and verification by a Vice-County Recorder. Please note that our preferred method of receiving records is through the online wildlife recording tool
Fill in a Spreadsheet
Collect your own records with our preferred data format. You can send the spreadsheet to us when you have records entered and we will import them into our database.
In West Wales, as across the UK, there are an army of local amateurs recording all sorts of species information. Many pass their species records on to the local county recorder or local or national group, society or recording scheme.
The county recorder is generally regarded as the local expert for a specific taxonomic group. Amateur recorders that pass their records on to the relevant county recorder contribute to a valuable county database. As the local expert the county recorder will verify records and will also be able to advise and help with identification. County recorders voluntarily dedicate a considerable amount of time and effort to compiling and collating an accurate county database. Such datasets are a valuable source of information locally and nationally.
Here is a list of County Recorders for the West Wales region.
WWBIC relies on volunteer recorders across the region. If you are interested in recording wildlife but are not sure how here’s a quick summary of what information is required to make a record:
- Who – the name of the recorder
- What – what species was seen, if unsure take a photo or jot down a description on a piece of paper
- Where – where was the species seen, a location name as well as a grid reference if possible, the more precise this can be the better.
- When – the date the species was seen
- Comments – this isn’t essential but can be useful, was it a male or female, describe it’s behaviour or how many there were.
At WWBIC we value all records whether it is of something common that is seen every day or a real rarity to the region. We find that common species are under recorded in the region but feel it’s as important to know what’s happening to our commoner species as well as the rare and protected ones.
Data we hold and use needs to be accurate and reliable. To help us maintain this quality of information, data we receive goes through a process of verification and validation.
We consider validation to involve the checking for date, grid reference and other typing errors.
- Grid references: data is mapped and records are checked against location names, as a spot check.
- Dates: are checked for any obvious errors but for import into the Recorder6 database they need to be a specific format so most checks are made during the formatting process. R6 will highlight some date errors during import.
- Species: any spelling/typing errors are eliminated during import into R6 as species names are checked against the internal dictionary.
We consider verification to be the confirmation by an expert that a species has been identified correctly. Normally the county recorder of the relevant taxonomic group does this. Most data that we receive that isn’t from the county recorder gets sent to them to be verified. In some cases, however, it is not possible, or unnecessary, to send what can sometimes be very large amounts of records to county recorders and in the case of some taxa there may be no county recorder available to verify records.
In 2011 we started to classify the records we hold using the following determination types or verification levels:
- Incorrect: where an expert has assessed the record and decided it must be wrong. Incorrect records are not used.
- Unassessed: records not sent out for verification, or sent out and waiting for response.
- Unconfirmed: records have been assessed but about which there is some doubt, such as not enough information.
- Considered correct: where the county recorder thinks it is probably correct, or where WWBIC considers it to come from a reliable source. (e.g. for some records there is no county recorder).
- Correct:records have been given by county recorder or in the absence of one, other known expert such as museum taxonomist.
WWBIC offers a range of services to local recorders including:
- recording software and IT advice
- digitisation of paper records
- help with the production of guides and atlases
- annual recorders forum
- recording days
- identification and recording training days
Individual county record density