Marked Birds Database – what’s coming up?

With the release of the Marked Birds Database version 2.5.0, the list of features that it contains has become very long.

After 6 years and thousands of hours of programming, I’m proud to say that it can be used to:

  1. Keep track of all observations in a central location, regardless of the project a bird belongs to.
  2. Add birds with Markers through an easy to use ‘point and click’ system.
  3. Display how leg rings are fitted.
  4. Keep track of all Markers that were ever fitted to a bird and what happened to each Marker (damaged, lost, replaced, etc).
  5. Immediately see the age of a bird at the time it was ringed or observed (in calendar years).
  6. Have bird ages automatically calculated (in calendar years).
  7. Have the time since you last saw the bird automatically calculated (in years, months, and days).
  8. Store often used locations for easy re-use.
  9. Keep track of co-observers.
  10. Use country flags to visualize where an observation was made or where a bird originates from.
  11. Add an unlimited number of images to each observation.
  12. Keep track of specific information such as primary moult, primary patterns, breeding data.
  13. Keep track of your own, custom data.
  14. Keep track of observations that still need to be submitted.
  15. Keep track of for which submitted observations a reply has not been received.
  16. Quickly see all observations made on a particular day.
  17. Quickly find information about an observer, ringer, or ringing project.
  18. Store life histories in text format, as a PDF or other file, as an image, or as a Web link.
  19. Perform advanced searches across all observations (again: regardless of the project the birds belong to).
  20. Easily export observations to Excel for submitting to ringers.
  21. Quickly send out an observation by email by copying automatically generated text.
  22. Import birds and observations from BirdRing.
  23. Keep track of references for birds such as publications, articles, weblinks, etc.
  24. Keep track of bird relations.
  25. And much more…

And all of this made available to the birding community for free.

This raises the question: what there is left to add? Well, not much really as far as functionality goes. I truly believe that it has now reached a stage where it is a robust platform for keeping track of ringed birds in high detail.

Other features that I have in mind to add (such as statistics) are not supported in the version of FileMaker that I distribute.

Of course, many more visuals can be added for displaying how rings are fitted for all kinds of different projects, but implementing this is time consuming and I have decided not to invest in this for now.

For that reason I believe that the time has come to leave the public release of the database for what it is for a while and to focus on other (personal) projects.

I’m therefore not planning on releasing any new features for some time to come.

Should I have a public update in some way or form, I will of course announce this.

Until then, I would like to thank everyone who showed support over the last couple of years and wish you much pleasure in reading rings in the field and keeping track of them in the database. I’m sure that I will enjoy it a lot myself!

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