II. Over 1000 man-hours were spent compiling
this checklist. Of course we agreed from the
beginning to accept all occurrences established by
previous checklist compilers and Checklist Committees, but to account for and document EVERY dot
and dash (or lack thereof) on the checklist. Also
we had to update the checklist from January 1988
through mid-May 1989.
About two-thirds of our time was spent obtaining, researching and reviewing every published bird
record for the UTC that we could locate. Thousands
of records were reviewed and put into a basic format
from which we could begin compiling. Much of the
checklist, the form, style and size, etc., was subjective, although we tried as much as possible to
keep to the formats of previous OG-ONC checklists .
However, the "meat" of the checklist, the occurrences, frequencies, dates, etc. was, we believe,
objective; in that we let the notes [of sightings]
speak for themselves to identify the birds. And, as
mentioned before, all decisions concerning the
checklist were unanimous. This criteria is extremely
important to keep the checklist as accurate as
possible, and so that future compilers do not have
to review all those records. All of us, the Checklist Committee included, are guilty of failing to
provide convincing details in our notes to the Clearing House at some time or other. No one who has
seen and reported a bird likes to see that record
missing from a Checklist Update. We are convinced
that the 7th Edition is accurate and error free.
Much of the time was spent by Ed Rozenburg,
putting all this data into a newly-created checklist.
Ten years ago the personal computer was not available to most of us! But, besides a new checklist,
two other fantastic objectives were met:
1. The UTC Checklist is on a computer!
2. An annotated list (including early spring arrival
date, observer, location, etc.) will be in one place
for every bird on the checklist not occurring all
year long! This means that all future checklists
will take a fraction of the time to produce as this
and previous editions required.
Compiling the checklist was seldom fun (Ed
types too slow, David has to see every record, and
Noel is too meticulous), but it was always interesting. We argued often—remember all of our decisions
had to be unanimous. The eleventh commandment
must say, "Thou shalt have no more than three
people on a checklist committee." But we learned
a great deal about the history and demography of
our Upper Texas Coast birds. Please criticize the
checklist and make suggestions for improvements,
and we will note them down. We hope you all enjoy
YOUR new checklist.
list with the data and grid generated by WORD-PERFECT but we found that we could get a more pleasing checklist by printing the WORD PERFECT data
files, then printing a grid generated by ALLWAYS
over the data for each panel of the checklist.
The printing on the cover and codes/explanatory notes page was generated with LOTUS 1-2-3
and ALLWAYS. However, due to a limitation in
the graphic symbol capability of ALLWAYS, we
decided to cut and paste the cover map and drawing,
as well as the occurrence graphics symbols at the
appropriate places due to time limitations.
The seven graphic pages of abundant-to-vagrant
birds were reduced 69% to get proper checklist size
(4x6 inches), resulting in a minimal loss of clarity
when reproduced in camera-ready form.
The following is a list of institutions, government agencies and individuals that provided much
assistance towards compiling this checklist, and we
wish to thank them all for all the work, searches,
data, records and specimens:
Alvin Community College, American Museum of
Natural History, Baylor University, Brazosport College, Congressman Jack Brooks, Chambers County
Library, College of the Mainland, Deer Park Public
Library, Larry Dennis, Ted Eubanks, Jr., Exxon
Research and Engineering Company, Ben Feltner,
Fort Bend County Library, Steve Gast, Houston Baptist University, Houston Museum of Natural Science,
Houston Public Library, Lamar University, Lee College, Library of Congress, Louisiana State Museum,
Louisiana State University, Mark McElroy, Jim
Morgan, Phillips 66, Rice University, Rosenberg
Library, Sam Houston State University, San Jacinto
Junior College, Smithsonian Institution, Southern
Methodist University, Stephen F. Austin State University, Sterling Municipal Library, Sul Ross State
University, Texas A&I University, Texas A&M University, Texas Christian University, Texas Cooperative Wildlife Collection, Texas Ornithological Society's Bird Records Committee, Texas Parks and
Wildlife Department, Texas Tech University, U.S.
Bird Banding Laboratory, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, University of Dallas, University of Houston,
University of St. Thomas, University of Texas,
Robert A. Vines Environmental Science Center,
Wallisville Heritage Park, West Texas State University,
and, especially, all those people who submitted their
sightings to the Spoonbill's Clearing House.
Houston, Texas, June 30, 1989
D.D., N.P., E.R.
THE SPOONBILL STAFF
III. The word processing and formatting of the
checklist was done on a Dell System 310 Personal
Computer. The printer used was a Hewlett-Packard
Laser Jet II, and the WORD PERFECT 42 was used
as the word processor. LOTUS 1-2-3-2.0 and
ALLWAYS were used for setting up the data and
Bird names and abundance symbols were first
entered into a spreadsheet using LOTUS 1-2-3. This
data was converted to a print file which could be
used with WORD PERFECT.
Our initial intentions were to print the check- ,
Editor Libby Price
Assistant Editor Ellen Red
Clearing House Editors: Lynne Aldrich and Peter
Gottschling, Rene and Andrew Franks, and
Layout Artist Connie Clark
Typing Libby Price
Labels Peggy Milstead
Mailing Connie Schimbor
Checklist Committee: Noel Pettingell, David Dauphin
and Ed Rozenberg