[Tweeters] Sensitive species in eBird

Josh Adams xjoshx at gmail.com
Fri Nov 17 21:01:36 PST 2017

Hello Tweets,
I have some pretty strong feelings about eBird's abrupt implementation
of their "sensitive species" policy. Obviously there are species
around the world which face immense pressure from poachers whose
precise locations need to be suppressed either temporarily or
permanently from consumption by the general public. On the other hand,
eBird also cast a rather arbitrary net with several North American
species that has caused a lot of backlash among some of their biggest

Specifically Gyrfalcon, Great Gray Owl, and Northern Hawk-Owl are all
species that occur throughout northern Europe, Asia, and America and
are listed as "least concern" by the International Union for
Conservation of Nature. Why they ended up on a list along with some of
the imperiled species is a very perplexing question.

Unfortunately the inclusion of these species very much limits the
ability of people with an interest in their historical occurrence,
habitat preferences, arrival and departure dates, etc. It's really a
bit of a stab in the back to those of us who have worked countless
hours to enter data, expecting that they and their peers, as well as
the scientific community, would get to benefit from it for years to
come and we're now left wondering what will disappear next.

Josh Adams
Cathcart, WA

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