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Can you explain the status descriptions you have used for records?

Submitted by Peter Orchard on Thu, 15/08/2019 - 08:24

Putting some meaning in to the status of species in species lists and distribution maps:

These notes should be read in conjunction with the general notes on species lists on the previous page.

Species lists are intended to help you enjoy your visit to a reserve by giving you some idea what to expect or by helping you identify a species you saw on your visit. The distribution maps are intended to help you find a particular species you may want to see. In addition to when a species was seen on a reserve I also try to give some idea as to how scarce or common that species is with a general status comment. This is based on an impression formed during a visit, not through any formal count or statistical assessment!

From the 1st January 2015 I am going to try and be a bit more consistent with these status estimates and I am also going to try and 'segment' larger reserves by habitat type to give an idea of where species may be seen within the whole site. Status comments for records from the 1st January 2015 onwards will use the following basis for assessment:

ANIMALS (Mammals through to lower invertebrates)

  • Present ..... the species is certainly present on the reserve as I saw at least one on my visit
  • Several ..... I saw a more than a couple of specimens but less than twenty
  • Numerous ..... I saw a fair number, probably between twenty and fifty
  • Plentiful ..... there were a lot there; probably between fifty and a hundred
  • Common ..... there were over a hundred present that I saw
  • Very Common ..... there were large numbers, more than I could even attempt to estimate
  • Abundant ..... they were just about everywhere!
  • Evidence ..... I did not see one but there is evidence to show that the species is present
  • Vagrant ..... the species was present but I would not expect to necessarily expect to see it there again
  • Migrant ..... this is a migrating species and one only likely to occur whilst on passage
  • Overhead ..... this species was not actually on the reserve but was visible overhead

PLANTS: (Flowers through to fungi)

  • Scarce ..... I found one or two specimens, you will have to look hard for it!
  • Occasional ..... I found some scattered across the area, you might see it!
  • Local .... I found a lot of it in one place, you should find it!
  • Frequent ..... I came across it often, you should see it!
  • Common ..... I saw it everywhere, you must see it!
  • Very common ..... I  saw lots of it everywhere, you will see it!
  • Abundant ..... it is the dominant vegetation, you cannot miss it!

Just a note about the date of the record. This may not be the last time I saw the species on that reserve, it was the date where the population status was as shown. 

I say again, the status is just an estimate to give you some idea as to the scarcity or abundance of a species in a particular place. If you are looking for a particular species then head for somewhere it most abundant!