Our February 2013 Newsletter

Dear Movebank users,

There's been a lot going on the past several months, and it's about time we sent an update!

Paper and video tutorial describing the Douglas Argos Filter in Movebank A recent paper published in Methods in Ecology and Evolution describes how the Douglas Argos Filter works and is implemented in Movebank. An analysis of over 21,000 paired Argos and GPS locations deployed on free-ranging birds shows that the filter can improve the accuracy of Argos locations by 50-90 percent and illustrates how filter settings can be used to cater the filter to different study objectives. To complement the paper, we've made a video tutorial showing how to run the filter in Movebank, available on our YouTube channel. We hope this will be helpful to the many Movebank users working with Argos data!

New features We have a number of new features to help you manage your research data in Movebank:

  • Email notifications for live feeds now have additional options, including a "mortality detector" to identify tags that have stopped moving based on user-specified criteria.
  • Add file attachments to your study, such as images, spreadsheets, or PDFs.
  • Batch edit reference data about animals, tags, and deployments and move data between tags in your study using the Deployment Manager.
  • Set up Argos subscriptions through Argos WebServices, which includes additional information about location error (we will continue to offer subscriptions using Telnet).
  • Import accessory measurements to your study that contain different timestamps than those of the location data.
  • New download options allow you to filter by date range and choose whether to include undeployed locations and outliers.
  • PIs and contacts for a study will now automatically be added as data managers to the study. Beta: Live feeds for e-obs GSM tags** You can now have data from deployed e-obs GSM tags sent directly to your study on Movebank. If you currently have these tags deployed and would like to start importing these data directly to your study in Movebank, please contact us at support@movebank.org and we'll help get you set up. If you are interested in having Movebank support other GSM and data formats, let us know.

User Forums Movebank's User Forums (no longer available as of 2020) allow you to post questions, ideas, and comments about animal tracking research methods. We are actively monitoring the forums and will do our best to ensure that all posts receive an expert response, and we encourage all users to use this resource!

Software pages We have created a Software section on the site to share information about software programs, R packages, and other analysis tools for animal movement and related data. For programs that are compatible with Movebank, we explain how you can use the programs with your data in Movebank.

BirdLife International seabird tracking data BirdLife International's Global Procellariiform Tracking Database contains the largest single collection of seabird tracking data. Through cooperation between Movebank and BirdLife International, you can now search for summary information about these seabird tracking studies in Movebank and link to more information from BirdLife. Global bird migration videos Over 60 researchers from around the world contributed to our bird migrations animation project. The animations are shown in two videos that show bird migration data stored in Movebank, including movements of over 1,500 birds—representing 58 species and over 2 million locations—tracked between 1992 and 2012. See these animations of migrations in Eurasia and the Americas on our YouTube channel.

Meetings and workshops In September 2012, we took part in the Next Generation Data Management in Movement Ecology summer course at the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research in Berlin and attended the International Conference on Managing Protected Areas under Climate Change conference in Dresden. In October, we helped lead a Movebank workshop for young scientists at the University of Bonn as part of the annual meeting of the German Union of Game Biologists. We're now making plans to attend several conferences this summer and fall. To read or share ideas for using Movebank as a teaching tool, join our Teaching with Movebank user group.

What's next? We're working on several new features as well as making general improvements to site performance and reviewing datasets for publication to the Movebank Data Repository. Our main projects for spring 2013 are preparing for the release of our environmental data annotation service, to allow you to link animal movements to hundreds of environmental parameters, and adding support for more data formats, including light-level data. Until next time, you're welcome to contact us with any feedback or requests for help. Also check the homepage and our Facebook page for occasional news. We can help you with uploading, organizing, or publishing your data in Movebank, or with building new analysis tools or collaborations. We're always glad to hear from you!

Sincerely, The Movebank Team

Published by Movebank on 2013-02-21