Information presented for official records must be accurate, for example, you find
a rare plant! Firstly, a positive identification is needed. You may have never encountered
the species before and a few pictures taken with a digital camera, are of great value
and can be researched on the Internet or e-mailed to an expert.
once you have a positive I.D. there will be more information required. Most recorders
ask for a 6 figure grid reference that can be worked out from an OS map. For a rare
species, an 8 or 10 figure reference may be asked for. These can be obtained using
a GPS which, when running at its optimum, is accurate within a couple of metres.
For more scarce species, a recorder may ask for a voucher specimen to add to the
county collection or for critical examination, so a few specimen bags or containers
are always handy to keep in a pocket.
You may wish to check the numbers of a specific species, this can be problematic
when searching through the undergrowth and a simple click counter is most useful.
What you should now have is:
(And any other information requested by the official recorder.)
The WBRC and Recording
The WBRC is run by the County Ecology department and holds over 2 million biological
records from all over the county. They also have a field by field and boundary by
boundary record for the whole of Warwickshire.
A powerful hand lens
is also very useful to assist with identification.
Last but probably the most important piece of equipment is a field note book and
pen to write it all down before you forget!!