Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Neotropical Birds Online

Tom Schulenberg, one of the authors of Birds of Peru, writes:
We are a long way from having a comprehensive series of natural history accounts for Neotropical birds.

But, we can change that. Working together, we might get there a whole lot faster than you might think.

The Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology is pleased to announce the launch of Neotropical Birds Online ( Neotropical Birds Online is similar to the familiar Birds of North America series, but one important difference is that Neotropical Birds will be free - no subscription fees!

The scope of Neotropical Birds Online is all bird species that regularly occur in the Neotropics, from Mexico and the Caribbean south to southernmost South America. The emphasis is on species that breed within this region, but the eventual goal is to provide accounts for all species that regularly occur within this region.

Each account on Neotropical Birds Online is a separate online publication. Full credit is given to the author, or collaborating team of authors, for each species account. The online format allows authors to revise their accounts to keep pace with new research. This format also allows us to incorporate other media into the species accounts, and to link to related resources elsewhere on the web. This is a collaborative project: Neotropical Birds Online not only is for researchers, birders, and managers who are interested in birds of the neotropics, but it also will be *created* by that community of specialists.

We are launching this with only a few completed species accounts, although more will be going online very soon. But for this project to succeed, it will need support from researchers working in the neotropics. You can contribute to Neotropical Birds Online not only through authoring a species account, but also by providing photographic images, sound or video tape recordings; learn more about how to contribute