Marked Birds Database – Version 1.11.0 available

I’m happy to announce the release of the Marked Birds Database version 1.11.0. It contains two main new features, various efficiency improvements and some fixes.

Most of the new features and improvements are a direct result of me using the database during the recent breeding season. Hopefully you will find these improvements useful too.

A link to the download file as well as instructions about installing, setting up and using the database can be found on the Marked Birds Database page.

Users who are using a previous version can import their data into the new version.

Option to track the current partner of a bird

In a future version I’m hoping to build in extensive functionality for tracking various relationships between birds such as parents, offspring and siblings, but for now I have added a way of tracking the current partner of a bird. The main aim is to use it as a quick way of navigating to that partner.

I needed this option because  I regularly came across paired birds (both of them ringed) during the breeding season for which I had to add observations including notes about observed behaviour. Once the observation and notes were added for one bird, the next step was to do the same for the other bird. I needed a quick way therefore of switching back and forth between the two partners.

It works as follows:

The Current Marker Code of the partner can be entered in the Bird Settings layout of a bird.

For birds that do not exist in the database because they are not ringed, you can also enter ‘Unringed’, ‘Metal’, or ‘Unread’.


When this fields holds a value, it is shown at the top of the screen when viewing the Bird Overview or Observation Details of that bird.


If a Current Marker Code is added, a ‘Show’ button appears. Clicking it will run a search for that code in the currently opened layout and quickly brings you to that bird.

Marking an observation as ‘flagged’

Every now and again you come across something special or out of the ordinary: a bird with a non-standard plumage, a bird showing odd behavior, a bird turning up at an unusual location, and so on. When your database expands to thousands of observations, it can become very difficult to find these special observations among all others.

For this purpose, an observation can now be ‘flagged’, and a short description of the reason why can be added.

To indicate that an observation is flagged, an icon appears for that observation on the Bird Overview layout. Hovering the mouse over the icon will show the entered description in a tooltip.


Flagging an observation can be done in the Notes tab in the Observation Details layout or by clicking the cog wheel for an observation on the Bird Overview layout.



Searching for flagged observations is of course also possible; the best way is to do this is by using Search Extra > Observations.

Efficiency improvements

  • Bird Overview: when clicking Save in the Observation popover, the popover is now also automatically closed.
  • Observation Details: The Batch Actions option now also allows to update the date when an observation was sent out or the date when a life history was received.
  • Primary pattern scores: it is now possible to duplicate the scores of one wing for the other wing.

Small new features or changes

  • To better indicate when a bird is not alive any more, the species is now shown in red on the Bird Overview screen.
  • When adding an image, the name of the file that is added is now shown. This should make it clearer which file is added, especially when adding multiple files.
  • When copying and pasting an observation, the Observation Type is now also included.
  • Primary pattern scores: to better capture the diversity in primary patterns of large gulls, extra patterns have been added.
  • iPhone layout: The Bird Notes field is added.
  • The Observations Printout is now shown in a separate window.
  • The Observations Printout is now not shown when there are no observations for a bird.
  • The Forteiland IJmuiden report now automatically sets the bird age in the format for the report.
  • The Forteiland IJmuiden report now automatically sets the bird plumage in the format for the report (for adults only in the months March to August).
  • Various design improvements have been made.

Fixed issues

  • Pasting an observation: no observers were included. This occurred when the observation was copied, the database was closed, opened again and the observation was then pasted. Because the copied observers were stored in memory which is cleared when the database is closed, the observer information was lost. Observers are now stored in a table, thereby making them available at any time.
  • Pasting an observation: the number of observers was not updated.
  • BirdRing import: BirdRing coordinates were not imported.
  • CHIRP Oystercatchers: colors for the Current Marker Code background and text were incorrectly set.

Release Notes – Marked Birds Database – Version 1.11.0

  • MBDB-583 Introduce ‘Flagged’ option.
  • MBDB-698 Observers are not correctly pasted when using the copy/paste function for observations.
  • MBDB-859 BirdRing import: Show Imported Observations shows incorrect results.
  • MBDB-864 BirdRing: BirdRing coordinates not imported.
  • MBDB-865 BirdRing import: make options more visible.
  • MBDB-866 Primary projection pattern scores – update.
  • MBDB-867 iPhone layout: add Bird Notes field.
  • MBDB-868 Pasting observation: observation count is not updated.
  • MBDB-869 Bird Overview: close Observation popover when it is saved.
  • MBDB-871 BirdRing: When ‘Use BirdRing coordinates’ is set, coordinates should not be pasted when copy/paste location.
  • MBDB-873 Primary pattern scores – add field for plumage cycle.
  • MBDB-874 Add option to track current partner.
  • MBDB-875 Show file name on Add Image layout.
  • MBDB-876 Copy/paste observation should also include Observation Type.
  • MBDB-877 Better indicate that a bird is not alive any more.
  • MBDB-879 Make it possible to duplicate primary pattern scores to opposite wing.
  • MBDB-880 IJmuiden Forteiland report: automatically set age and plumage.
  • MBDB-884 Batch update reporting date and submitted dates.
  • MBDB-885 CHIRP – Incorrect Current Marker Code colors.
  • MBDB-886 Observation printout: when no observations exist, show message instead of empty printout.
  • MBDB-887 Observation printout: open in separate window.

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