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Listing Software for Mac

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Old Tuesday 25th June 2019, 15:12   #1
hilzoy
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Listing Software for Mac

Hi -- I use a Mac, and am unlikely to change. For years I have kept my life list on a database program called Wings. However, I'm not sure that it's still supported, and I thought it might be a good idea to check out other programs. However, there aren't a lot of current comparisons of listing programs for Mac.

I'd use eBird, but a lot of my records have locations like "on the highway between X and Y", or just the name of a large city, which are fine for me but not, imho, responsible contributions to a citizen science site.

Anyone have any thoughts?
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Old Tuesday 25th June 2019, 15:31   #2
njlarsen
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For a stand-alone program, https://www.scythebill.com/ (I am using it on Windows, but it is stated to run on that, MAC and Linux, and Adam is very helpful)
Regarding Ebird, some of your data still could be entered and used for presence/absence analysis, or you could upload the checklists you yourself a most proud of and leave the rest?

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Old Tuesday 25th June 2019, 16:32   #3
hilzoy
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Thanks; that looks great!
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Old Wednesday 26th June 2019, 23:30   #4
awiner
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Scythebill and Wings

Coincidentally, I've literally *just* coded support for importing from Wings (to save you the effort of re-entering your data) - literally wrote the code last night. It's not yet released (that'll have to wait for the next version), but if you're willing to send me some XML exports from Wings, and email me at [email protected], I'd very much like to have a second sample to test my new code (and in return, I can send you a Scythebill file containing all of your sightings so you'll be up-and-running).
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Old Thursday 27th June 2019, 21:07   #5
awiner
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Originally Posted by awiner View Post
Coincidentally, I've literally *just* coded support for importing from Wings (to save you the effort of re-entering your data) - literally wrote the code last night. It's not yet released (that'll have to wait for the next version), but if you're willing to send me some XML exports from Wings, and email me at [email protected], I'd very much like to have a second sample to test my new code (and in return, I can send you a Scythebill file containing all of your sightings so you'll be up-and-running).
... though in the short-term, you could also use Wings "Export to eBird" feature, then use Scythebill's support for importing from eBird. I'd be curious to hear how high-fidelity that path is.
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Old Friday 28th June 2019, 07:30   #6
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Originally Posted by awiner View Post
Coincidentally, I've literally *just* coded support for importing from Wings (to save you the effort of re-entering your data) - literally wrote the code last night. It's not yet released (that'll have to wait for the next version), but if you're willing to send me some XML exports from Wings, and email me at [email protected], I'd very much like to have a second sample to test my new code (and in return, I can send you a Scythebill file containing all of your sightings so you'll be up-and-running).
You Sir, are one clever b****** and we thank you........
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Old Thursday 11th July 2019, 15:13   #7
John Fleet
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Thanks for the heads up guys. another Mac user here who for years has been looking for something suitable. I've settled on using Birdwatcher's Diary for field recording then uploading to eBird. Just downloaded all my eBird records and imported them into Scythebill which went without a hitch. In all honesty I'm not sure how much benefit it will give me, but at the very least it's good to have a local copy of my records accessible without needing to rely on eBird's servers...
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Old Thursday 11th July 2019, 16:04   #8
awiner
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Thanks for the heads up guys. another Mac user here who for years has been looking for something suitable. I've settled on using Birdwatcher's Diary for field recording then uploading to eBird. Just downloaded all my eBird records and imported them into Scythebill which went without a hitch. In all honesty I'm not sure how much benefit it will give me, but at the very least it's good to have a local copy of my records accessible without needing to rely on eBird's servers...
Yeah, if you're happy to have all of your records on eBird, and you've only got bird records, then you certainly can get by with just eBird. Many do!

(And personally, I'd just use eBird for field recording too, but maybe Birdwatcher's Diary is good enough to be worth it?)

Some things you can do with Scythebill today that you can't do with eBird:
  • Extended taxonomies (so more than just birds)
  • All subspecies, not just identifiable forms
  • IOC taxonomy (there's an "IOC taxonomy" in eBird but it's just about changing species names in a weird way)
  • Much more detailed queries and reporting - and much, much faster.
  • Works offline
  • More accurate listing totals - for example, you can record non-established species, or uncertain identifications, or records-rejected-by-the-committee, and still have them listed in your records, but not counted for species totals. (I'd be surprised if eBird didn't tackle this at some point - it is a major nit that listers have with using eBird.)
  • Happy to have extremely inexact records (if you know you saw a species somewhere in North America in 2000, you can record that) - really useful for people who've been birding for awhile and not always kept the best records.
  • No need to defend all of your rarities. It's a very, very good thing that eBird has reviewers that check your data - it's a public database! - but some find this onerous.

Obviously, the big downsides are one more piece of software in your life, and one more data file to keep backed up and in sync with everywhere else.
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