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IOC taxonomy updates
Last Post 10/23/2018 8:15 AM by Graham Tebb. 6 Replies.
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Author Messages
Graham Tebb
Great Gray Owl
Great Gray Owl
Posts:271


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08/23/2018 12:49 PM

    Dear Jeff,

    One of the many arguments people give for switching from Clements/Cornell to IOC taxonomy (apart from the higher numbers) is that the IOC list is updated quarterly rather than annually, so is more up-to-date.  But when I look at the taxonomic lists available for BD it seems that nothing has happened to the IOC list since the big fanfare last October.  Are there plans to provide annual (or more frequent) updates or are the majority of BD users happy to stick with Clements/Cornell?

    All the best,

    Graham

    Jeff Jones
    Great Gray Owl
    Great Gray Owl
    Posts:8312


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    08/23/2018 12:57 PM

    Hi Graham,

    Thanks for posting. As always, I produce an update to each of the big 4 taxonomies (ABA, AOS, Clements and IOC) each year at this time.

    They will be ready to go near the end of September.

    I have no plans to update IOC more often than annually. I don't feel customers want to pay for an update that costs me weeks to put together more than once a year, and to-date, you are the first to ask as far as I can remember. What do you think?

    Does this answer your questions?

    Let me know please and thanks again.

    Jeff

    Birder's Diary Technical Support
    Graham Tebb
    Great Gray Owl
    Great Gray Owl
    Posts:271


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    09/11/2018 3:05 AM
    Dear Jeff,

    Thanks for clarifying this. As the IOC list was only released last year I wasn't sure whether you planned to issue annual updates. I personally think that this is fine: IOC users would probably be less than thrilled at having to pay for four updates a year to keep their taxonomy up-to-date.

    The result, though, is that one of the makor arguments for switching to IOC is removed. I can't say I'm too sorry: the idea of trying to reconcile my entire list (which is growing slowly but steadily) doesn't appeal at all, even though it would be the easiest way of hitting the big number (at which I told my children I'd think about taking up a different hobby).

    All the best,

    Graham
    Jeff Jones
    Great Gray Owl
    Great Gray Owl
    Posts:8312


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    09/14/2018 7:59 AM

    Hi Graham,

    FYI: I have been releasing and issuing annual updates to the IOC list for years.

    Take care,

    Jeff

    Birder's Diary Technical Support
    Graham Tebb
    Great Gray Owl
    Great Gray Owl
    Posts:271


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    10/22/2018 8:56 AM
    Dear Jeff,

    Oops, sorry, of course you have. But the IOC list was unattractive until it included subspecies, which it now does. I´m currently thinking about switching from Clements to IOC. I guess this should be possible with the Reconcile sightings feature but do you know whether anybody has acually tried it? My database is now fairly large (130,000 sightings of 7,500 Clements species) so an estimate of how longI can expect to spend sorting things out would be much appreciated!

    All the best,

    Graham
    Jeff Jones
    Great Gray Owl
    Great Gray Owl
    Posts:8312


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    10/22/2018 9:05 AM

    Hi Graham,

    Good question. Yes - a few dozen folks do this every year. They make the change from Clements to IOC. Not sure of all the reasons for the change, but I am sure that many see it as an opportunity to increase their world life lists counts as the IOC tends to split more than Clements. However, Clements, of late, has been falling more in line with this type of reasoning also.

    Yes, the process is accomplished using the Reconcile feature. It may take from just an hour to more-than-a-few-hours; but it's not any bigger of a task than that. And, it is a task wherein using the Reconcile feature, you can do a little now and a little later. It doesn't all have to be done in one sitting.

    Let me know if I can assist further.

    Jeff

    Birder's Diary Technical Support
    Graham Tebb
    Great Gray Owl
    Great Gray Owl
    Posts:271


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    10/23/2018 8:15 AM
    Dear Jeff,

    The higher number is not the only reason to switch (the number of gaps also increases, so areas where we thought we had cleaned up need to be revisited!): the Clements list seems to lag a long way behind latest developments in Asia, for example. As I'm sure you know, though, there are apparently discussions underway to unify the two lists, which would make things easier for many of us.

    I personally like many aspects of the IOC taxonomy but cannot come to terms with some of the new names for species. I can't imagine ever saying "Wood Nuthatch" without the quotation marks, for example. And the idea of struggling to reconcile sightings for several hours is not particularly appealing, although with winter approaching I should have more time to play. It's good to know the program will support me whatever list I decide to use in future.

    All the best,

    Graham
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