Van Remsen in American Birds September 1977 wrote an article that greatly influenced my birding: "On Taking Field Notes." Following this article I changed the way I kept track of birds I saw. In fact, I kept field notes based on this article faithfully for 28 years, until 1996. After that my field notes kind of sputtered and were irreglular until 2006. Then I started using BirdNotes online for some of my birding trip lists.
|A tub full of Greg's bird field notes dated from 1972 to 2006.|
The reason I bring this all up (again)? Just this week I finished a 5 year project of entering all those 37 years of my bird notes (1972-2010) into eBird. Yes, every bird that I've ever seen for which I have notes that contain exact locations and dates, are now in eBird. In total, including these old notes and bird lists directly into eBird from 2010 to date, they number over 7000 checklists. 4000 of those lists are complete checklists--every bird I saw at a particular location and date. All my notes, all those valuable data, all that hard work, is preserved and publicly available right now as long as eBird and National Audubon Society and the Internet exist. That's a lot better than sitting unused in a blue tub in my closet.
I think Van Remsen would be pleased.