Import/Export Data

 

Use this window to exchange data between different Birder's Diary databases and for importing taxonomic and checklist data files purchased from the Online Store.

There are 5 TABs on this window, each of which relate to importing or exporting data specific to the name on the TAB. Each TAB and its use is discussed below.

 

image\Alert.gif All data exported from this window is exported in comma-separated format (CSV format). These files can be opened using common spreadsheet tools (e.g. Microsoft Excel®). Where they differ from Excel is that they have a blank first row (except for Sightings import/export in v4.0 and later) in the file where Excel would create a header row, containing the column names. If you create a CSV file using Excel, note that you will have to edit it afterwards using NotePad, WordPad or some other text editor to remove the header row and replace it with a blank/empty first row (except for Sightings import/export in v4.0 and later). By default, Excel will not save a blank first line.

Here is a sample sightings export file opened in Microsoft Notepad:

image\IMG00112.gif

Here is the same file opened in Microsoft Excel:

image\IMG00113.gif

image\lite-bulb.gif The format for each of the files used by each TAB is stated under the section for that TAB. File formats are shown only so experienced users can manipulate and import data from other sources.

 


In this Topic Hide

Sightings TAB

Locations TAB

Checklists TAB

Taxonomy TAB

Reports TAB

Band Codes TAB


 

Sightings TAB

 

Use this TAB to export sightings from your database. You may want to do this to easily mail them to a colleague/friend/family-member, regional sighting compiler also using Birder's Diary, or to another computer where you have Birder's Diary installed. The recipient can easily import the file into their Birder's Diary database. Use the date and observer filters to limit the sightings data being exported.

 

Also, use this TAB to import sightings from a Birder's Diary export or from another data source where the import file has been formatted as per the information provided below.

In addition, starting with version 4.1 and forward, use this TAB to import sightings from one of many eBird formats. The eBird format will be recognized and handled appropriately.

 

image\lite-bulb.gif You might also export this data so it can be imported into a spreadsheet tool (such as Microsoft Excel) for data analysis and graphing. But, consider using the Export feature from the View/Edit Sightings window in order to include user-defined data information as well.

 

New in Version 4.0!

With version 4.0, the Export will include

With version 4.0, the Import feature will

ParentLocation is only used on Import, it is not exported. ParentLocation can contain the parent location of the sighting location on import. It can also contain a list of ancestor locations separated by ">". For example, if the sighting location is "BackYard", ParentLocation can contain "Colorado>Teller County, CO>Sunnywood Estates>My Home". In this example, all the ParentLocation locations would be created if they don't already exist in the proper hierarchy, and BackYard would be created under "My Home". If a location from ParentLocations already existed, it would be used instead of being created.

 

Examples - first two lines of CSV file

 

Example with pre-v4.0 format and blank first row:

<...left blank....>

"Sample","I","Observer","SIO","American Wood Duck","COLORADO","Bosque 2005",3/14/2007,1,1,"Nice day!","F"

 

Example with pre-v4.0 format and valid header row (order is not important):

FirstName,MI,LastName,Initials,SciOrCommonName,Location,Trip,DateAndTime,MinObserved,MaxObserved,Comments,LifeListDisabler

"Sample","I","Observer","SIO","American Wood Duck","COLORADO","Bosque 2005",3/14/2007,1,1,"Nice day!","F"

 

Example with pre-v4.0 format and valid header row (order is not important), field order changed:

SciOrCommonName,Location,Trip,DateAndTime,MinObserved,MaxObserved,Comments,LifeListDisabler,FirstName,MI,LastName,Initials

"American Wood Duck","COLORADO","Bosque 2005",3/14/2007,1,1,"Nice day!","F","Sample","I","Observer","SIO"

 

Example with minimum required fields:

SciOrCommonName,Location,FirstName,MI,LastName,Initials

"American Wood Duck","COLORADO","Sample","I","Observer","SIO"

 

Example with Trip info and a couple UDFs:

SciOrCommonName,Location,FirstName,MI,LastName,Initials,Trip,TripStartDate,TripEndDate,Dead,Song

"American Wood Duck","COLORADO","Sample","I","Observer","SIO",Bosque del Apache,1/12/2015,1/13/2015,False,True

 

 

Begin Date

image\what.gif This will set a starting date filter for limiting the data exported.

End Date

image\what.gif This will set an ending date filter for limiting the data exported.

Observer

image\what.gif This will select the observer to export sightings for. Leave this dropdown blank to export sightings for all observers.

Export

image\what.gif Click this button to export sightings data based on your selected filters. You will be prompted for the output file location and name.

Import Birder's Diary Sightings Export File

image\what.gif This is the default. If selected, it expects the import file selected by the user to be created by a Birder's Diary export function. It expects that the name of the thing being imported to primarily be that of an internal Birder's Diary thing.

image\why.gif Use this when importing a sightings file created by a Birder's Diary export; such as one created on this window using the Export function.

Import Personal Sightings by Common Name

image\what.gif If selected, it expects the import file selected by the user to be created by something other than a Birder's Diary export function. It expects that the name of the thing being imported to be that of a common or scientific name used by one or more taxonomic lists loaded in your Birder's Diary database. If it doesn't match on either, then you will be prompted to specify the target thing manually.

image\why.gif Use this when importing a sightings file created by something other than a Birder's Diary export. This is usually the case when converting your sightings data from some other source such as your own database or another piece of birding software.

Import

image\what.gif Click this button to import sightings from a valid Birder's Diary sightings export file. You will be prompted to select the import file.

Append On Export of Existing File

image\what.gif Check this checkbox in order to have your export appended to the end of an existing export file.

image\why.gif You would use this when you want to export several different sets of sightings data, but have it all imported on the destination machine as one import file.

Open Log...

image\what.gif Click this button to open the Log file in your default text editor.

image\why.gif You might want to view the log file for errors or specific information pertaining to an import or export.

Pre-version 4.0 File Format

The first row of this CSV file must be blank. All other rows have the following format:

Example:

"Sample","I","Observer","SIO","American Wood Duck","COLORADO","Bosque 2005",3/14/2007,1,1,"Nice day!","F"

 

Column

Description

Values

1

First Name

Text; Note: if the observer does not exist, it will be added.

2

Middle Initial

One character

3

Last Name

Text

4

Initials

1-3 chars

5

Thing Name or Common Name (Note: see above for which to use.)

This can be an internal Birder's Diary thing name, common name or scientific name. Note: if the name cannot be resolved, the user will be asked to manually match the name to an existing thing in the database.

6

Location

Text; Note: if the location does not exist, it will be added as a child under the "$Orphaned Locations$" location.

7

Trip

Text; if this trip does not exist in the import database it will not be added.

8

Date/Time

Valid date/time specification. Time is optional. Note: This should be in a format as specified in the regional settings of your computer.

9

Min Count

Integer

10

Max Count

Integer

11

Comments

Text

12

Life List Disabler

"T" or "F"; if "T", do not count this sighting against life list counts.

 

 

Locations TAB

image\IMG00114.gif

 

Use this TAB to export your location hierarchy information for easily importing into another Birder's Diary installation.

You might use this feature, for example, if you have created a regional location hierarchy for your country, county, state, province, etc that others can use by importing your information.

Location

image\what.gif Specify the top node in the location hierarchy that you want to export. Leave this blank to export your entire location tree.

image\why.gif You would use this to only export the branch in your location hierarchy that you want to share with others.

Export

image\what.gif Click this button to export the specified location tree. You will be prompted for the output file location and name.

Import

image\what.gif Click this button to import a location hierarchy into your database. You will be prompted to select the import file.

Open Log...

image\what.gif Click this button to open the Log file in your default text editor.

image\why.gif You might want to view the log file for errors or specific information pertaining to an import or export.

File Format

The first row of this CSV file must be blank. All other rows have the following format:

Example:

"ALABAMA","LOWER 48 UNITED STATES","Description","Habitat","Comments","F"

 

Column

Description

Values

1

Location Name

Text

2

Parent Location Name

Text

3

Description

Text

4

Habitat

Text

5

Comments

Text

6

Top Location

"T" if location is WORLD; else "F"

 

 

Checklists TAB

 

This is a multi-functional TAB design for importing and exporting checklist data. Note: importing or exporting a checklist file will not alter the specified taxonomic list in any way.

Exporting data is fairly straight forward. You can specify a tax list to act as a filter for the things exported and then either export by location (exporting all things for that location) or by thing (exporting all locations for a given thing).

Importing data has the functionality required to get checklist data into Birder's Diary from a variety of sources. Since this data is in constant flux around the world, especially for our feathered friends, this portion has been designed to aid in keeping such data as current as possible. The most important feature now available since v3.6.39 is the Free-Form Text File Import functionality. You can take checklist data you find in almost any source (e.g. Web site, PDF file, etc) and as long as you can save it as a text file or put in your Copy/Paste buffer, this process will process that data and update checklist data for any location in the world. You will be given a chance to review the proposed changes and accept/reject individual modifications! For a tutorial on this process, please see this topic in the How To section.

Checklist imports come in one of two flavors:

  1. All things for a given location
    For example, all reptiles for Denmark. You may be the reptile expert for Denmark and have updated all reptiles known to occur in Denmark.

  2. All locations for a given thing
    For example, all locations for a European Robin. You may be the European Robin expert and have updated all known locations for this bird.

This TAB gives you the ability to export or import each type.

 

Each row in a checklist file lists

  1. A location name,

  2. a thing name and

  3. a flag to indicate whether the thing is common at that location.

 

Taxonomy

image\what.gif This will allow you to specify a taxonomic list that required for "Export by Location", "Overwrite Locations" and "Import Free-form Text". Specifying a taxonomic list will filter what is exported or imported to those things defined by the selected list.

image\why.gif Use this on "Export by Location" when you only want to export the things classified by the selected taxonomic list. Use this on Import with "Overwrite Locations" so that you do not remove things for other taxonomic lists not included in the import file. For example, you do not want to remove butterflies known to occur in Colorado when importing new checklist data for birds in Colorado. Use this on Import with "Free-form Text" to specify the names that the import should be looking for in the text file.

Include contained locations in Export

image\what.gif Checking this box will include any checklist data associated with the specified location's descendants. For example, if you specify North America, any checklist data associated with states or provinces will also be exported. Only applicable to "Export by Location".

image\why.gif Use this when you are exporting checklist data associated with a taxonomic list. In this case, specify the taxonomic list and the location which contains all areas associated with the taxonomic list. Then this export will pick up all locations where checklist data is specified for the things associated with the taxonomic list. For example, when exporting data for the ABA taxonomic list, you would specify the "ABA AREA" as the location, the ABA tax list and check this checkbox. Since checklist data for the ABA AREA and ABA tax list is specified at the state/province level, it will pick up all of that data and export it.
If this checkbox is not checked, you will only get things associated with the specified location.

Location (Export Checklist)

image\what.gif Setting this value will specify the location to export things for when the Export by Location button is clicked.

image\why.gif Use this when you want to export checklist data for a specific location and/or all contained locations by using the checkbox above it. For example, if you have updated the list of Trees that occur in Alaska, you would specify the Tree taxonomic list, enter Alaska into this field and click on the Export by Location button. This will create a checklist export/import file that you can share with other Birder's Diary users so that they can update the list of trees that occur in Alaska by using the import features on this TAB.

Export by Location

image\what.gif Clicking this button will prompt you for a filename to save the export to. It will export all things associated with the specified location; filtered by a taxonomic list if specified.

image\why.gif Use this when you want to export a list of things associated with a location. You should specify a taxonomic list if your intent is to export only the set of things associated with a specific tax list.

Name

image\what.gif Setting this value will specify the thing to export all associated locations for.

image\why.gif Use this when you have updated all locations for a specific thing, e.g. bird, butterfly, tree, etc. and want to share this updated location information with other Birder's Diary users. This field will accept common, alias and scientific names.

Export by Name

image\what.gif Clicking this button will prompt you for a filename to save the export to. It will export all locations associated with the specified thing.

image\why.gif Use this when you have updated all known locations for a thing in Birder's Diary and want to export this information for other Birder's Diary users.

Analyze data before import

image\what.gif Checking this option will display an analysis window after reading and analyzing the specified checklist file but before updating your database. In the analysis window, you will have the option of reviewing the proposed changes to your database's checklist data; accepting or rejecting individual updates or canceling the entire import. If you leave this button unchecked, the import will run to completion with no input required from you.

image\why.gif Use this feature when you want to review the changes that would be made to your checklist data before completing the import. You will have the opportunity to accept/reject changes, write the proposed changes to a log file, view the log file, or cancel the import altogether.

Ignore Subspecies

image\what.gif Checking this option will cause the import to neither add nor remove subspecies. This is only valid with the "Overwrite Locations" option.

image\why.gif Use this when the data you are importing does not contain subspecies information. If you didn't use this, then the subspecies associated with the locations contained in the import file will be removed. For example, say you have butterfly subspecies checklist data for Mexico already in your database. But you found a source for checklist information that you want to import - but this information does not contain checklist data for subspecies. An "overwrite locations" import assumes that the import data is complete for the locations contained in the import file. When the import process analyzes import file versus the data in your database, it will assume anything in your database that is not in the import file should be removed. Checking this option will save your subspecies data.

Do Not Overwrite

image\what.gif Choosing this option will only add records to your database. It will ignore records that already exist in your database and will not remove any records based on what is not in the import file.

image\why.gif You would rarely use this option. Typically, if you are concerned about what might be removed from an import, you would choose either "Overwrite Things" or "Overwrite Locations" with the "Analyze..." option.

Overwrite Things

image\what.gif Choosing this option will assume the import file is a complete list of locations for a given thing (or group of things). Therefore, it will completely update your checklist data for each thing in the import file. This will cause some new locations to be added per thing along with some locations in your database to be removed. This type of import file is usually created using the Export by Name feature on this TAB.

image\why.gif Use this option when you are importing a checklist data file that contains all known locations for each thing in the checklist file. Typically you would use this only on files created by the Export by Name feature on this TAB.

Overwrite Locations

image\what.gif Choosing this option will assume that the import file contains a complete list of things per each location referenced in the import file. You must specify a taxonomic list for this option. Otherwise, importing a bird checklist for Colorado would result in removing all other things from Colorado, e.g. butterflies, mammals, etc. This type of import file is usually created using the Export by Location feature on this TAB.
image\lite-bulb.gif This is the option to use when importing checklist files available from the Birder's Diary web site - on the Downloads page.

image\why.gif Use this option when you are importing a checklist data file that contains all known things, as defined by the specified tax list, for each location in the checklist file. Typically you would use this on files created by the Export by Location feature on this TAB - which is exactly how all checklist data files on the web site Downloads page are created!

Import (Import Checklist Created by Diary Export)

image\what.gif Clicking this button will prompt you for the file to be imported.

image\why.gif You would use this button for checklist data import files created by a Birder's Diary export. This includes all checklist data files found on the Birder's Diary web site Downloads page.

Import data directly from Copy/Paste buffer

image\what.gif Specifies that the data to be used for import and name matching is to be grabbed directly from the Copy/Paste buffer, instead of from a data file created with the same data.

image\why.gif Use this to save the step of copying checklist data for a location to a text file first. Just be sure the data with the names for a given location is in your Copy/Paste buffer and then click on the Import button. If this option is checked (by default), then you will not be prompted for a file containing the data, and the data will be read automatically from your Copy/Paste buffer.

Location (Import Checklist from Free-Form Text File)

image\what.gif Specifies the location that this free-form text import file is for. You must also specify the taxonomic list to use for name matching.

image\why.gif Use this when importing a free-form text data that contains names to be associated with a location. You will often find electronic/soft-copy data on the web or otherwise which contains, for example, the list of birds to be found in Australia. The file simply contains a list of bird names. In order to process it correctly, this process needs to know which location in Birder's Diary that this data is for.

Import (Import Checklist from Free-Form Text File)

image\what.gif Clicking this button will prompt you for the file to be imported if the "Copy/Paste" checkbox is not checked. Otherwise, it will grab the data from the Copy/Paste buffer and begin the import process.

image\why.gif Use this when importing a list of names for a specific taxonomic list that occur at a specific location. All the data needs to include is a list of common and/or scientific names. You must specify the Location.

Append On Export of Existing File

image\what.gif Check this checkbox in order to have your export appended to the end of an existing export file.

image\why.gif You would use this when you want to export several different sets of checklist data, but have it all imported on the destination machine as one import file.

Open Log...

image\what.gif Click this button to open the Log file in your default text editor.

image\why.gif You might want to view the log file for errors or specific information pertaining to an import or export.

File Format

This only applies to Birder's Diary import/export files. The free-form import file does not need to have any format. Rather, just a list of names for a specific location pertaining to a specified taxonomic list.

The first row of this CSV file must be blank. All other rows have the following format:

Example:

"ALABAMA","Allegheny Chinkapin","F"

 

Column

Description

Values

1

Location Name - if location does not exist in database, it will be added under $Orphaned Locations$ during import.

Text

2

Name - can be common name, scientific name or band code

Text

3

Common

"T" or "F"

 

 

Taxonomy TAB

image\IMG00116.gif

 

This TAB allows you to import and export taxonomic lists.

You will probably only ever use the import feature of this TAB as you add additional taxonomic lists from the Downloads page at the Birder's Diary web site.

You might use the export feature if you create your own taxonomic lists or before you remove an old taxonomic list from your database, you may want to export it first, just in case you want to re-import it later for reference.

Taxonomy

image\what.gif Specify the taxonomy to export.

image\why.gif Use this when exporting a taxonomy. It is required.

Export

image\what.gif Clicking this will prompt you for the export file location and name, and then perform the export.

Import

image\what.gif Clicking this will prompt you for the import file location and name. It will then perform the import.

image\why.gif You would use this when importing taxonomic lists purchased from the Online Store and downloaded from the Birder's Diary web site's Download page.

Open Log...

image\what.gif Click this button to open the Log file in your default text editor.

image\why.gif You might want to view the log file for errors or specific information pertaining to an import or export.

File Format

This file format is protected by checksum security and you can only create a taxonomic list using the Birder's Diary Tax and Thing Editors along with the Tax Viewer.

 

Reports TAB

image\IMG00117.gif

 

This TAB allows you to import and export report templates. In this way, you can share report templates you have created with other Birder's Diary users!

Report Template TreeView

image\what.gif The selected report template will be the template exported.

image\why.gif Use this to select the report template you want to export.

Export

image\what.gif Clicking this will prompt you for the export file location and name, and then perform the export.

Import

image\what.gif Clicking this will prompt you for the import file location and name. It will then perform the import.

Open Log...

image\what.gif Click this button to open the Log file in your default text editor.

image\why.gif You might want to view the log file for errors or specific information pertaining to an import or export.

File Format

This file format is undocumented and not supported. You can and should only create report templates using the Report designer. However, once created by the Report designer, it can be exported and imported to another Birder's Diary database.

 

Band Codes TAB

 

This TAB allows you to import a CSV formatted file containing band codes associated with names (common or scientific).

Currently, only Import is supported; not Export.

 

If the name is not recognized, the user will be prompted to match or ignore the band code.

List Name

image\what.gif The Name to be used for the imported band codes (e.g. AOU 2013).

image\why.gif The list being imported will always be a new list, and therefore requires a name.

Taxonomy

image\what.gif Specify the Taxonomy to be used for name matching in this list.

File Format

The first row of this CSV file must be blank. All other rows have the following format:

Example:

"HITI","Highland Tinamou"

 

Column

Description

Values

1

Band Code

Text; band code to be matched to the name in Column 2.

2

Common or Scientific (genus and species) name

The name that will match a name in the selected Taxonomic list.