April 2023 Update: Data Vetting Blocks Complete!We are thrilled to announce that we have finished the quality control steps for the Wisconsin Breeding Bird Atlas II dataset!
This was a massive undertaking, as over 3,500 atlasers generated over 2.8 million records in the atlas portal, among the approximately 8 million records in eBird in Wisconsin during this period.
Most vetting we did at this stage was at the breeding code level rather than vetting the occurrence of a species, because our detailed regional filters and strong network of local eBird reviewers had already caught many of the species-level errors.
Records were screened in multiple ways, checking for proper breeding codes, seasonal timing, location within the state, and a final manual check of each atlas priority block.
We will now be moving on to prepare the results and analysis for final products, including the book!
We Did It: All 1,283 Atlas Blocks Complete!
We started this fifth and final data collection season with 500 blocks left to finish. But thanks to your energy, dedication, and grit, all 1,283 priority and specialty Atlas blocks in Wisconsin have been marked complete!
We can all be proud of this phenomenal effort, representing the work of more than 2,000 people and five years of data collection. From the Apostle Islands of Lake Superior, to the bluffs and backwaters along the Mississippi, to the agricultural fields of southern Wisconsin, volunteers from across the state came together to complete the Atlas.
The bulk of active data collection occurred from early 2015 through late summer 2019, but there is still much to be done!
Atlas coordinators will be very focused on data review through 2023. With hundreds of thousands of records, all data will need to be reviewed for breeding codes, dates, locations, and species, and checked in a variety of ways.
After all data is reviewed, results will be published in a book, just like the first Wisconsin Breeding Bird Atlas. It will take several years to prepare the atlas data, the point count data, generate maps and models, and write species accounts and other chapters. Atlas results data will also be available online. Look forward to a high-quality atlas book to document results, as well as a data-rich, user-friendly online presence.
The Wisconsin Breeding Bird Atlas II is a comprehensive field survey documenting the distribution and abundance of birds breeding across our state. Birds are an essential part of Wisconsin’s culture and ecology. Yet many species face grave threats from habitat loss, climate change, and other human-caused pressures and nearly one-third are imperiled or will be without intervention. To conserve them, we need a current understanding of birds that rely on Wisconsin to breed and raise their young.