Observing and identifying wildlife and noting down the key information (the four W’s) is the first part of recording, but what do you do with the information? To be useful, it is important to get the information into a logical format that you (and others) can understand. This could mean writing them in a diary or notebook, entering them into a computer or filling in a recording form. As a local environmental records centre we will take data in any format so long as it has the requisite information.
Many people have computers at home into which they can enter and store information. This can be very useful, in that it not only gives you access to a searchable list of your sightings but also helps to save us time in processing records.
If you use Microsoft Excel, we have prepared a sample spreadsheet for doing this. The spreadsheet contains columns for all of the information we need, and is particularly useful if you record regularly and generate a lot of records.
There are also many computer software packages specifically designed for storing wildlife sightings. Popular ones include MapMate and Recorder 6, but there are others too. If you already use one of these programs then please contact us to discuss the most efficient way of sharing your records.
If you prefer to keep paper records then you can download a printable wildlife recording form (pdf).
SUP is registered in Scotland as a company limited by guarantee with charitable status. Company No. SC200827 / Charity No. SCO29475