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: ANNOUNCING: a new resource for Illinois birders...  ( 14615 )

Greg Neise

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ANNOUNCING: a new resource for Illinois birders...
« : February 28, 2013, 04:52:56 PM »
...and "phase two" of the ILBIRDS.COM family of web sites.

**Illinois Birding by County**.

This is an experiment in building a new kind of birding guide that I hope you
will enjoy:

http://countywiki.ilbirds.com/

As we build onto this humble start, I think the Illinois Birding Community will,
once again, set a standard for sharing birding information on the web.

I'd like to also thank the initial set of editors (and hope that we can add a
few more!):

Adam Sell
Andy Sigler
Beau Schaefer
Dan Williams
Jim Mountjoy
Keith McMullen
Matthew Cvetas
Matt Fraker
Michael Retter
Matthew Winks
Nathan Goldberg
Rhonda Rothrock
Randy Shonkwiler
Scott Cohrs
Walter Marcisz
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Nick Minor

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Re: ANNOUNCING: a new resource for Illinois birders...
« #1 : February 28, 2013, 04:58:09 PM »
Awesome idea Greg!! I know when I was getting really into birding, it was really difficult to get a grasp of good birding spots without knowing many birders in the area; this would, undoubtedly, have been an incredible resource. And the only direction this can go is up; I'd love to help in anyway I could.

Also, the current entries are really good. I look forward to some point in the future when birding in Illinois is nearly entirely mapped out.
« : February 28, 2013, 05:04:40 PM Nick Minor »
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Nat Carmichael

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Re: ANNOUNCING: a new resource for Illinois birders...
« #2 : March 01, 2013, 05:42:50 AM »
This is huge!  :D  Thank you so much for making this resource available and thanks to all the authors who provided contributions.  I especially liked Adam Sell's entry for Waukegan Beach.  There were a lot of species in there that I didn't realize paid visits to that area. 

brewbird1

Re: ANNOUNCING: a new resource for Illinois birders...
« #3 : March 01, 2013, 06:30:48 AM »
Nice job, Greg!  Me likey!

Rhonda R

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Re: ANNOUNCING: a new resource for Illinois birders...
« #4 : March 01, 2013, 06:54:21 AM »
Awesome Greg!  Now I'm getting totally side-tracked...want to add a bunch of places.  Don't forget to add "Jackson" under the county list for the Pomona Cave Creek & Natural Bridge locations.  Southernmost Illinois...so much birding habitat, so little time to bird there.
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Brendon Lake

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Re: ANNOUNCING: a new resource for Illinois birders...
« #5 : March 01, 2013, 09:02:09 AM »
This is a remarkable birding tool! I would like to contribute in any ways possible as well. Great job indeed this will be a very helpful item!

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Evan Carlson

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Re: ANNOUNCING: a new resource for Illinois birders...
« #6 : March 02, 2013, 09:45:42 PM »
This is a wonderful idea. This is exactly the kind of thing I've wished existed since I started birding. Since before I started really, since one of the reasons I started was to find out exactly what kind of birds were in the parks I already visited and hiked in. Now I'll sit back and wait impatiently for Peoria and Tazewell counties to get filled in (Singing Woods and Juiblee, please.  ;) )

An idea for the future: A way for anyone to add entries and locations to the site like a true wiki, though not necessarily to be able to edit the entries already made for the "hot spots." As long as things don't become cluttered, more information is always a good thing.

Keith A. McMullen

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Re: ANNOUNCING: a new resource for Illinois birders...
« #7 : March 03, 2013, 08:43:48 AM »
Greg,

Looks like an excellent start. Maybe you can clarify something for me. IF one wanted to add something to a specific site already mentioned, how would one go about doing so? Would one simply send you the info?

I like this but I have noted a couple of things that I wouldn't necessarily agree with. I don't think that's a bad thing, but IF you have numerous birders contributing to this (and you will, which is great), NOT everyone will concur about some things. A couple of things I noticed for example: WORM-EATING WARBLER at Siloam Springs S.P. I've NEVER had one there!  I would not consider them common. I would not consider going there specifically for them. Sure, they may occur every year. Those could possibly be migrants, too.  But, honestly, I think WORM-EATING WARBLER at Siloam would be a VERY tough bird there. (In my opinion, they are difficult to find in any of the parks outside areas in the Shawnee N.F. of southernmost Illinois. Pere Marquette S.P., N of St. Louis Metro area in Jersey County, has them, but they are pretty difficult there as well.

I think some inexperienced birders or simply those not familiar with an area would be quite disappointed if they did not find "WORMIES" at Siloam. Again, this is simply wondering out loud that all of us have had different experiences and have different opinions on things, so I "worry" that those differences could take away from the validity of some of the site information being offered.

Again, just an observation. I haven't had the time to offer up much help on this project. I intend to. I'll gladly enter some definite Southern Illinois locales for WORM-EATING WARBLER that will be a slam-dunk :)

So, let me know your thoughts on how we keep the information fresh and updated. After all, I would think the idea is this is simply a guide and gets folks to these spots to search for all the possibilities. Again, that's a good thing.

Hopefully you realize this is intended to be constructive criticism and nothing more. You've put in a TON of time on this and it looks great. Like I said, just a couple small things like the Siloam entry that I noted.

Keep up the good work and hopefully soon, I'll be able to contribute!

Keith
 

Greg Neise

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Re: ANNOUNCING: a new resource for Illinois birders...
« #8 : March 03, 2013, 12:35:21 PM »
You can leave a comment below the entry for things like that. But last year, at least, WEWA was pretty easily had, by many people (including myself) at the location marked. One observer had more than one in that general area (I think 3) ... in June.
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frakerpovc

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Re: ANNOUNCING: a new resource for Illinois birders...
« #9 : March 04, 2013, 09:53:57 AM »
This is just my personal opinion, but I would like feedback from the masses about my entries (which at this point only includes Clinton Lake). Is it useful? Are there birds I missed? Inaccurately portrayed? Did you bird there using my entry and what was the result? Like Greg noted, use the comment section, or -- and I think we can all do this pretty easily -- contact the author backchannel.

Obviously posting good things may be more appropriate at the County Forum, whereas posting corrections or disagreements might be better done behind the scenes. So the Worm-eating Warbler question might get addressed with a private group email involving the folks who bird there (or here in the more easily conversational IBF arena).

Either way -- I think it is important for everyone to realize that these descriptions clearly are not set in stone, and will require input, correction, updating, as we go along. And without feedback or inquiries from our birding community, none of that will happen.
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Greg Neise

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Re: ANNOUNCING: a new resource for Illinois birders...
« #10 : March 04, 2013, 10:29:44 AM »
Right. The idea here is that the birding community can (and hopefully will), keep the location information up to speed.

The county wiki is a guide, not a forum...so I think that comments, such as "I was there all day and couldn't find XX..." are valid. The entry can be updated/corrected if need be. The comments in the county wiki are open to the general public. You don't have to be an IBF member, or logged in to anything to leave a comment (and there are some very seriously powerful anti-spam measures in place).
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Adam Sell

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Re: ANNOUNCING: a new resource for Illinois birders...
« #11 : March 04, 2013, 01:02:05 PM »
The whole point, if I'm right Greg, is to have a birding guide that is constantly updated.  No need to wait for the next "edition" to realize that bird X is no longer being seen at site A.  Thanks for all the hard work you've put into this, Greg, and thanks for letting me be a part of it.

As an example on how this works, I just edited my piece for the Lake County Fairgrounds.  I realized later on that a very pertinent part of the equation for this hot spot was left out!

http://countywiki.ilbirds.com/lake-county-fairgrounds/
Adam Sell

Mark Swanson

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Re: ANNOUNCING: a new resource for Illinois birders...
« #12 : March 04, 2013, 02:04:14 PM »
The whole point, if I'm right Greg, is to have a birding guide that is constantly updated.  No need to wait for the next "edition" to realize that bird X is no longer being seen at site A.  Thanks for all the hard work you've put into this, Greg, and thanks for letting me be a part of it.

That makes sense to me. (And I'll add my thanks to everyone involved in creating such a valuable resource.)

As an example on how this works, I just edited my piece for the Lake County Fairgrounds.  I realized later on that a very pertinent part of the equation for this hot spot was left out!

http://countywiki.ilbirds.com/lake-county-fairgrounds/

But given what you said above, why wouldn't the edit be made directly to the article rather than added as a "comment" below? Or does someone else with editor privileges have to integrate the comment into the article later?
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Greg Neise

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Re: ANNOUNCING: a new resource for Illinois birders...
« #13 : March 04, 2013, 02:18:55 PM »
Actually, in this case Mark is correct ... the comment by Adam should be added to the article itself (which I did).

What I envisioned the comments to be used for was the public at-large to be able to contribute things such as:

their recent experience at a location
logistical information that may have changed
questions or suggestions

Depending on the feedback/suggestions, the article may be updated. The whole point is to build a "living document" of bird-finding info for Illinois that is easily searchable/browsable, and easy to use on mobile devices.
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Glenn Perricone

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Re: ANNOUNCING: a new resource for Illinois birders...
« #14 : March 09, 2013, 11:12:52 PM »
So we can comment under locations, but we can't add new locations? Certain 'editors' are only allowed that right? (If so, how does one become an editor?)

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