What happens to the data?

All records that contain at least the minimum information (species, date, place and observer) are collated into a single spreadsheet with all the year’s records. This is used for writing the Species Accounts in the Bird Report. Data are also used or shared with others in a variety of other ways:
• The collated data form an incredibly valuable resource that can assist with conservation, planning and research. To enable this, the data are passed each year to the North East Scotland Biological Records Centre (NESBReC) which acts a core biodiversity data portal for the region.

• Records may be passed on directly, where appropriate, to the Rare Birds Breeding Panel (see their website for details on how they use the information).

• The records are also loaded by the Regional Recorder onto the BirdTrack system which collates the results from both casual birdwatching records and from more systematic surveys into a central national database. The sheer volume of records held means that robust information can be derived on species status and trends.

• Via BirdTrack, records feed into projects such as the national breeding and wintering distribution atlases for which fieldwork has recently been completed. Note that records that are loaded straight to BirdTrack by individual birdwatchers are downloaded for use in this report by the Regional Recorder so there is no need to send these records in again.

• There are also plans in hand for the data that reach BirdTrack to be made available on the National Biodiversity Network (www.nbn.org.uk). We will update in future issues of this report on progress with this plan.

• As well as being published in the paper copy of the Bird Report, the compiled species accounts are to be made available three years after publication as part of the Scottish Bird Report.