How to use the Holistic Encyclopedia

Our website has several aims, including a forthcoming free online bird teaching (from 2020), developing the most responsible eco-tourism (with birding as a main interest) and share information and photos about most birds of the World.

In the idea of a great birding challenge described here, one bird will be shown daily, hopefully during the 30 next years to cover most of the c.11,000 species that are known by science. Photos of the same species will be grouped in one page, with some little information, notably regarding where and when the photos where taken. Scientific general information are perfectly described in HBW Alive, we have no chance to publish anything better. Conservation is also well covered, in the same reference and even more in Birdlife International website. However, if our field records seems to diverge from those references regarding either taxonomy or conservation, we will explain our point of view.

Links to HBW Alive page and Wikipedia, unless the page of the later doesn’t look appropriate to us, will be given. In addition, for officially threatened species and those we believed to be threatened, we will add a link to the Birdlife International page of the species involved.

When the online lessons will start, some information needed for the training will be added, especially in the “reference species”, a concept that will be explained when needed.

In the meantime, here are some explanation about the meaning of some categories.

A species that exist only in one country or one restricted geographical unit such an islands or a mountain range. We have 4 sub-categories. In addition, if a bird exist only in one very large country but where it is widespread, we add “national endemic” next to his category (one of those listed below).

  1. Classic endemic (1*): limited to one EBA (Endemic Bird Area), one archipelago, one country (except very widespread in huge countries, see above), but with a range (excluding the sea) of more than 50.000 km2.
  2. Star endemic (2**): same than above, but in a range of less than 50.000 km2
  3. Super star endemic (3***): an endangered species restricted to a single country (unless in the next sub-category) or a species restricted to one island, one forest or one mountain (with range between 801 and 5000 km2).
  4. Mega star endemic (4****): species restricted to one country and one island, forest or mountain of maximum 800 km2 or critically endangered.

Star species: one of our favourite, a much sought-after bird, or a bird on which threats are under-estimated by Birdlife International or IUCN to our opinion.

Reference species: concept we will need for the online training

Complex species to review: actual classification is not satisfactory and will have to be adapted. Short explanation is given in the text.

Simple species: all species not falling in one of the categories listed above.



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