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Movebank Attribute Dictionary

The following are definitions of terms used in Movebank to describe individual measurementsreference data (information describing animals, tags, deployments), and studies in Movebank. If you would like to add additional attributes to your data sets in Movebank that you don't see here, you can request additions to this list by selecting Request Attribute from the upload interface and filling out the form that appears or contacting us at support@movebank.org.

Study terms

The following terms are used to describe individual studies in Movebank.

study: The name of the study in Movebank in which data are stored.

contact person: The Movebank user who is the contact for this study.

principal investigator: The principal investigator (PI) or lead researcher for the study. This can be a Movebank user, or information for non-registered PIs or multiple PIs can be provided manually.

citation: A citation for the study. If the data are equivalent to those in a published study, the existing publication can be cited. If the data have not been published, an "unpublished data" or "in progress" citation should be used, listing authors and a title for the data set.

acknowledgements: Acknowledgements for the study. These can include institutions that provided funding or site access and the names of field assistants, collaborators, etc.

grants used: A list or description of grants used to fund the research.

license terms: Terms of use for the data in the study, provided by the study owner. If no license terms are specified, the General Movebank Terms of Use apply.

study summary: A brief description of the study objectives, methods, and results (used to be study objectives).

study reference location: A reference location for the study chosen by the data owner that is used as the location for the study marker shown on the Movebank map. This location can represent a colony, homing location, deployment site, resesarch institute location, or other location relevant to the study.

Reference data terms

These terms are used to describe animals, tags, and deployments in a study. The tracking data themselves, and information specific to each sensor measurement, are described using the data terms below.

Animals

animal comments: Additional information about the animal that is not described by other reference data terms.
example: sibling of #1423

animal death comments: Comments about the death of the animal.
example: hit by a car

animal ID: An individual identifier for the animal, provided by the data owner. This identifier can be a ring number, a name, the same as the associated tag ID, etc. If the data owner does not provide an Animal ID, an internal Movebank animal identifier may sometimes be shown.
example: 91876A, Gary
same as: individual local identifier

exact date born: The exact date an animal was born.
examples: 2001-10-31, 2001-10-31 18:36:00.000
formats: yyyy-MM-dd, yyyy-MM-dd HH:mm:ss.sss
units: if time is not included, day is determined by local time; if time is included, times are in UTC (users often probably upload data in GPS time, which is a few leap seconds different from UTC)
same as: animal exact date of birth

latest date born: The latest date an animal is thought to have been born.
examples: 2001-12-12, 2001-12-12 16:54:00.000
formats: yyyy-MM-dd, yyyy-MM-dd HH:mm:ss.sss
units: if time is not included, day is determined by local time; if time is included, times are in UTC (users often probably upload data in GPS time, which is a few leap seconds different from UTC)
same as: animal latest date born

ring ID: A number or color scheme for a band or ring attached to the animal.
example: 26225
units: none
same as: animal ring id

sex: The sex of the biological individual(s) represented in the Occurrence.
Values are from a controlled list:

m: male
f: female

taxon: The scientific name of the species on which the tag was deployed, as defined by the Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS, www.itis.gov). If the species name can not be provided, this should be the lowest level taxonomic rank that can be determined and that is used in the ITIS taxonomy. Additional information can be provided using the term taxon detail.
example: Buteo swainsoni
same as: species, animal taxon, individual taxon canonical name

taxon detail: A more specific name and/or reference for the taxon name provided by the taxon term. This can be used, for example, to specify a subspecies or other taxonomic category not supported by the ITIS.
example: Calonectris diomedea borealis (Cory, 1881)
same as: animal taxon detail

Terms describing animals that vary with time and are usually documented at the beginning of a deployment—including life stagemass, and reproductive condition—are listed under terms for deployments below.

Deployments

animal life stage: The age class or life stage of the animal at the beginning of the deployment. Can be years or months of age or terms such as "adult", "subadult" and "juvenile". Units should be defined in the values (e.g. "2 years").
example: juvenile, adult
units: Any units should be defined in the remarks.

animal mass: The mass of an the animal.
example: 500
units: grams

animal reproductive condition: The reproductive condition of the animal at the beginning of the deployment.
example: non-reproductive, pregnant

attachment type: The way a tag is attached to an animal. Values are chosen from a controlled list:

collar: The tag is attached by a collar around the animal's neck.
glue: The tag is attached to the animal using glue.
harness: The tag is attached to the animal using a harness.
implant: The tag is placed under the skin of the an animal.
tape: The tag is attached to the animal using tape.
other: user specified

behaviour according to: A description of behavioral categories in the data set and/or how they were derived.
example: Behavior was derived using acceleration data and an automated algorithm calibrated using field observations.

data processing software: Name of the software program/s, scripts, etc. used to process raw sensor data and derive location estimates.
example: BASTrack

deploy off latitude: The geographic latitude of the location where the deployment ended (intended primarily for instances in which the animal release and tag retrieval locations have higher accuracy than those derived from sensor data).
example: -38.6866
units: decimal degrees, WGS84 reference system

deploy off longitude: The geographic longitude of the location where the deployment ended (intended primarily for instances in which the animal release and tag retrieval locations have higher accuracy than those derived from sensor data).
example: 146.3104
units: decimal degrees, WGS84 reference system

deploy off person: The name of the person/people who removed the tag from the animal and ended the deployment.
example: J. Smith

deploy off timestamp: The timestamp when the tag deployment ended.
example: 2009-10-01 12:00:00.000
format: yyyy-MM-dd HH:mm:ss.sss
units: UTC (Coordinated Universal Time) or GPS time, which is a few leap seconds different from UTC
same as: deploy off date

deploy on latitude: The geographic latitude of the location where the animal was released (intended primarily for instances in which the animal release and tag retrieval locations have higher accuracy than those derived from sensor data).
example: 27.3516
units: decimal degrees, WGS84 reference system

deploy on longitude: The geographic longitude of the location where the animal was released (intended primarily for instances in which the animal release and tag retrieval locations have higher accuracy than those derived from sensor data).
example: -97.3321
units: decimal degrees, WGS84 reference system

deploy on person: The name of the person/people who attached the tag to the animal and began the deployment.
example: G. Smith

deploy on timestamp: The timestamp when the tag deployment started.
example: 2008-08-30 18:00:00.000
format: yyyy-MM-dd HH:mm:ss.sss
units: UTC (Coordinated Universal Time) or GPS time, which is a few leap seconds different from UTC
same as: deploy on date

deployment comments: Additional information about the tag deployment that is not described by other reference data terms.
example: This deployment was excluded from analysis because the tag failed.

deployment end comments: a description of the end of a tag deployment, such as cause of mortality or notes on the removal and/or failure of tag.
example: Data transmission stopped after 108 days. Cause unknown.

deployment end type: A categorical classification of the tag deployment end. Values are chosen from a controlled list:

captured: The tag remained on the animal but the animal was captured or confined.
dead: The deployment ended with the death of the animal that was carrying the tag.
equipment failure: The tag stopped working.
fall off: The attachment of the tag to the animal failed, and it fell of accidentally.
other
released: The tag remained on the animal but the animal was released from captivity or confinement.
removal: The tag was purposefully removed from the animal.
unknown: The deployment ended by an unknown cause.

deployment ID: A unique identifier for the deployment of a tag on animal, provided by the data owner. If the data owner does not provide a Deployment ID, an internal Movebank deployment identifier may sometimes be shown.
example: Jane-Tag42

duty cycle: Remarks associated with the duty cycle of a tag during the deployment, describing the times it is on/off and the frequency at which it transmits or records data.
example: it turns off during the night
units: Any units should be defined in the remarks.

geolocator calibration: A description of how solar geolocators were calibrated.
example: We calibrated the geolocators while deployed on the animals over a two-week period in their breeding site (< 5 km^2). See Jameson et al. (2011) for additional details.

geolocator light threshold: The light threshold used for location estimation with solar geolocators.
example: 16
units: undefined

geolocator sun elevation angle: The sun elevation angle used for location estimation with solar geolocators.
example: -2.86
units: degrees

habitat according to: A description of habitat categories in the data set, how they were derived, and/or a reference to indicate which habitat classification system was used.
example: field observations, visual analysis using Google maps

location accuracy comments: Comments about the location error estimate values provided using location error text, location error numerical, and/or vertical error numerical. The percentile uncertainty can be provided using location error percentile.
example: 1 standard deviation errors, assuming normal distribution, provided by the GPS unit

manipulation comments: Additional comments about the way in which the animal was manipulated during the deployment. Use manipulation type to define the general type of manipulation.
example: Relocated from breeding colony on Smithers Island to release location at 70.02E, 21.21S

manipulation type: The way in which the animal was manipulated during the deployment. Additional details about the manipulation can be provided using manipulation comments. Values are chosen from a controlled list:

confined: The animal's movement was restricted to within a defined area.
none: The animal received no treatment other than the tag attachment.
relocated: The animal was released from a site other than the one at which it was captured.
manipulated other: The animal was manipulated in some other way, such as a physiological manipulation.

study site: The name of the deployment site, for example a field station or colony.
example: Pickerel Island North

tag readout method: The way the data are received from the tag. Values are chosen from a controlled list:

satellite: Data are transferred via satellite.
phone network: Data are transferred via a phone network, such as GSM or AMPS.
other wireless: Data are transferred via another form of wireless data transfer, such as a VHF radio transmitter/receiver.
tag retrieval: The tag must be physically retrieved in order to obtain the data.

Tags

geolocator sensor comments: Description of light and other sensors, e.g. range of light intensity, light spectra (nm), that is not described by other reference data terms.
example: tag includes light-level and wet-dry sensors

sensor type: The type of sensor with which data were collected.
Values are chosen from a controlled list:

acceleration: The sensor collects acceleration data.
accessory measurements: The sensor collects accessory measurements, such as battery voltage.
Argos Doppler shift: The sensor is using Argos Doppler shift for determining position.
barometer: The sensor records air or water pressure.
bird ring: The animal is identified by a ring that has a unique ID.
GPS: The sensor uses GPS to find location and stores these.
magnetometer: The sensor records the magnetic field.
natural mark: The animal is identified by a natural marking.
radio transmitter: The sensor is a classical radio transmitter.
solar geolocator: The sensor collects light levels, which are used to determine position (for processed locations).
solar geolocator raw: The sensor collects light levels, which are used to determine position (for raw light-level measurements).

tag comments: Additional information about the tag that is not described by other reference data terms.
example: custom-made Doppler shift Argos tag with a special altitude sensor

tag failure comments: Comments about tag failure.
example: tag stopped transmitting 23/12/08, was not found

tag ID: A unique identifier for the tag, provided by the data owner. If the data owner does not provide a tag ID, an internal Movebank tag identifier may sometimes be shown.
example: 2342, ptt_4532
same as: tag local identifier

tag manufacturer name: The company or person that produced the tag.
example: Holohil
same as: manufacturer

tag mass: The mass of the tag.
example: 24
units: grams

tag model: The model of the tag.
example: T61
same as: model

tag processing type: Used to distinguish between data formats produced by different types of Microwave tags (currently not used).
same as: processing type

tag production date: The approximate date the tag was produced (can be a year, month, or day).
example: March 2011
units: none specified

tag serial number: The serial number of the tag.
example: MN93-33243
units: none
same as: tag serial no, serial no

Data terms

These terms are used to describe individual sensor measurements, e.g each recorded time and location along an animal's track. See below for terms specific to

acceleration axes: Indicates the enabled accelerometer axes.
example: XYZ
units: none

acceleration raw X: Raw acceleration values provided by the tag for the X axis. Range and units may vary by provider, tag, and orientation of the sensor on the animal.
example: 0.556641
units: not defined

acceleration raw Y: Raw acceleration values provided by the tag for the Y axis. Range and units may vary by provider, tag, and orientation of the sensor on the animal.
example: 0.09375
units: not defined

acceleration raw Z: Raw acceleration values provided by the tag for the Z axis. Range and units may vary by provider, tag, and orientation of the sensor on the animal.
example: -0.84375
units: not defined

acceleration X: Acceleration values provided by the tag for the X axis. For acceleration values not in units of m/s^2, use acceleration raw x.
units: m/s^2

acceleration Y: Acceleration values provided by the tag for the Y axis. For acceleration values not in units of m/s^2, use acceleration raw y.
units: m/s^2

acceleration Z: Acceleration values provided by the tag for the Z axis. For acceleration values not in units of m/s^2, use acceleration raw z.
units: m/s^2

acceleration sampling frequency per axis: The sampling frequency for one axis of an accelerometer within a burst.
example: 5.93
units: Hz

accelerations raw: Burst of acceleration sensor values.
example: -0.609 -0.094 0.820 -0.562 -0.117 0.820 -0.586 -0.141 0.796 -0.679 -0.117 0.750 -0.656 -0.117 0.773 -0.586 -0.187 0.867 -0.468 -0.234 0.656 -0.960 0.094 0.609 -1.148 0.164 0.492 -0.773 0.164 0.398 -0.843 0.351 0.515 -1.312 0.468 0.468
units: none

activity count: A value provided by some tags that can be used to generally indicate whether an animal is active.
example: 209
units: none

algorithm marked outlier: Identifies events marked as outliers using a user-selected filter algorithm in Movebank. Outliers have the value TRUE.

barometric depth: The barometric water pressure depth.
units: m

barometric height: Altitude estimated by a barometric pressure sensor on the tag.
example: 179
units: m
same as: bar:barometric height

barometric pressure: The barometric air or water pressure.
units: mbar (hPa)
same as: bar:barometric pressure

battery charge percent: The battery charge as a percentage of full charge.
example: 25
units: none (percent)

battery charging current: The battery charging current reported by the tag.
example: 0
units: milliamperes (mA)

beacon frequency: The frequency of the radio tag or tag retrieval beacon.
example: 450.5
units: MHz
same as: tag beacon frequency

beacon frequency: The frequency of the radio tag or tag retrieval beacon.
example: 450.5
units: MHz
same as: tag beacon frequency

behavioural classification: Behavioural classifications assigned to the animal by the data owner. The method for defining and assigning these classifications are unique to the study and can be described using behaviour according to.
example: roosting, foraging, running

compass heading: The tilt-compensated horizontal compass heading.
example: 62
units: degrees clockwise from magnetic north

event comments: Additional information about individual records or events in a data set that is not described by other reference data terms.
example: we observed the animal foraging (see photo BT25)
same as: comments

event ID: An identifier for the set of information associated with each record or event in a data set. A unique event ID is assigned to every time-location or other time-measurement record in Movebank.
example: 6340565
units: none

external temperatureThe temperature measured by the tag (different from ambient temperature or internal body temperature of the animal).
example: 32.1
units: degrees Celsius

GPS fix type: The type of GPS fix. 1 = no fix; 2 = 2D fix (altitude typically not valid); 3 = 3D fix (altitude typically valid).
example: 3
units: none

GPS DOP: Dilution of precision provided by the GPS.
example: 1.8
units: unitless

GPS HDOPHorizontal dilution of precision provided by the GPS.
example: 1.2
units: unitless

GPS maximum signal strength: The signal reception strength of the strongest GPS satellite of those used to calculate the location estimate.
example: 39
units: dBm

GPS satellite countThe number of GPS satellites used to estimate the location.
example: 8
units: none

GPS time to fixThe time required to obtain the GPS location fix.
example: 36
units: seconds

GPS VDOPVertical dilution of precision provided by the GPS.
example: 1.9
units: unitless

GSM MCC-MNC: The mobile country code (MCC) (digits 1-3) and mobile network code (MNC) (digits 4-5 or 4-6) uniquely identifying the wireless operator through which the data are transferred.
example: 50711
units: none

GSM signal strength: An integer proportional to the GSM signal strength measured by the tag. Valid values are 0–31, or 99 for unknown or undetectable. Higher values indicate better signal strength.
example: 39
units: arbitrary strength units (asu)

ground speed: The estimated ground speed between consecutive locations.
example: 7.22
units: meters per second

habitat: A category or description of the habitat in which the event occurred. Information about how the values were obtained can be provided using habitat according to.
example: oak savannah, pre-Cordilleran steppe

heading: The direction in which the tag moved from this location to the subsequent location, calculated as the bearing between consecutive locations, in decimal degrees clockwise from north; for example, 0 = north, 90 = east, 180 = south.
example: 315.88
units: decimal degrees

height above ellipsoidThe estimated height above the ellipsoid returned by the GPS unit. (If altitudes are calculated as height above mean sea level, use height above mean sea level.)
example: 24.8
units: meters

height above mean sea level: The estimated height of the tag above mean sea level returned by the GPS unit. (If altitudes are calculated as height above an ellipsoid, use height above ellipsoid.)
example: 34
units: meters
same as: height above msl

height raw: Raw values for the height of the tag above ellipsoid or mean sea level provided by the tag. Values are stored as raw text values because non-numeric characters are used or processing is required to derive the correct height estimate.
example: 425, 2D fix
units: undefined

latitude (decimal degree): The geographic longitude of a location along an animal track as estimated by the processed sensor data. Positive values are east of the Greenwich Meridian, negative values are west of it.
example: -121.1761111
units: decimal degrees, WGS84 reference system
same as: location lat

latitude (UTM): The geographic longitude of the geographic center of a location along an animal track as estimated by the processed sensor data.
example: 3628361.84012295
units: meters, WGS84 reference system
same as: utm northing

light level: Light-level values measured by a solar geolocator.
example: 28
units: undefined
same as: gls:light level

local timestamp: The date and time a sensor measurement was taken in the time zone of the study reference location. The time zone for the study reference location is determined using the IANA Time Zone Database and a shapefile of these zones provided by efele.net.
example: 2008-08-14 15:31:00.000
format: yyyy-MM-dd HH:mm:ss.sss
units: specific to the study time zone

location error numerical: An estimate of the horizontal error of the location including only numbers. (If the error estimates include non-numerical characters such as ">" use location error text.) These values can be described using location error percentile and location accuracy comments.
example: 50
units: meters

location error text: An estimate of the horizontal error of the location estimate, typically provided in the original data file, described using more than numbers. Units should be provided in the values. (If the values are purely numerical, use location error numerical.) These values can be described using location error percentile and location accuracy comments.
example: > 25 ft
units: defined in the values

location error percentile (in %): The percentile error for horizontal error values provided in location error text or location error numerical. Additional comments about these values can be provided using location accuracy comments.
example: 67
units: unitless (percent)

longitude (decimal degree): The geographic longitude of a location along an animal track as estimated by the processed sensor data. Positive values are east of the Greenwich Meridian, negative values are west of it.
example: -121.1761111
units: decimal degrees, WGS84 reference system
same as: location long

longitude (UTM): The geographic longitude of the geographic center of a location along an animal track as estimated by the processed sensor data.
example: 756243.7836
units: meters, WGS84 reference system
same as: utm easting

magnetic field raw X: Raw magnetic field values provided by the tag for the X axis.
example: -0.5197
units: gauss

magnetic field raw Y: Raw magnetic field values provided by the tag for the Y axis.
example: -0.993
units: gauss

magnetic field raw Z: Raw magnetic field values provided by the tag for the Z axis.
example: -0.8857
units: gauss

manually marked outlier: An event marked manually as an outlier, typically using the Event Editor in Movebank. Allowed values are TRUE or FALSE.

manually marked valid: An event marked manually as valid to override the results of a Movebank data filter (stored in algorithm marked outlier), typically using the Event Editor in Movebank. These values also override values in manually marked outlier. Records marked as valid have the value TRUE.

migration stage customThe migration stage of the animal. Values are specific to the study. To use a controlled list of migration stages that can be compared across studies, use migration stage standard.
example: Stopover #1d
same as: migration stage

migration stage standard: The migration stage of the animal, using standard terms that can be compared across studies. To use study-specific terms, use migration stage custom. Values are chosen from a controlled list:

altitudinal migration
breeding grounds
fall migration
foraging grounds
foraging migration
irruptive migration
latitudinal migration
migration to molt site
molt site
natal area
nomadic migration
other seasonal migration
removal migration
reproductive migration
spawning grounds
spring migration
stopover
summer non-breeding
vertical migration (aquatic)
wintering grounds

modelled: Can be used to identify locations or light level values that are modelled, interpolated, or otherwise added or changed based on the original location or light level estimates from the original data collection system. These may include movement model outputs, locations added to create a dataset with equal time intervals, etc. Allowed values are TRUE or FALSE.

proofed: Can be used to indicate whether or not records have been proofed by an expert involved with the study. Allowed values are TRUE or FALSE.

raptor workshop: behavior: Behavioral categories used for analysis as part of the Movebank raptor workshop in Hawk Mountain, USA, February 2009. Values are chosen from a controlled list:

nesting: An observation where an animal is observed, or determined to be, at its nest site.
roosting: An observation where an animal is observed, or determined to be, roosting.

raptor workshop: deployment special event: Special events in the deployments used for analysis as part of the Movebank raptor workshop in Hawk Mountain, USA, February 2009. Values are chosen from a controlled list:

biologically irrelevant: An observation that is found to be biologically irrelevant, for example because there was no animal wearing the tag.
death: The location where an animal is found or determined to be dead.
release site: The location where the animal is released.
tag failure: The observation where the tag was found, or determined, to have failed.

raptor workshop: migration state: Migration states used for analysis as part of the Movebank raptor workshop in Hawk Mountain, USA, February 2009. Values are chosen from a controlled list:

breeding grounds: In the breeding grounds.
fall migration: On fall migration.
migration: On a seasonal migration.
natal area: In the area where the animal was born.
non-breeding grounds: In the non-breeding grounds, i.e. wintering grounds.
spring migration: On spring migration.
stopover: In a stopover site during a migration.
summer non-breeding: In a summer non-breeding grounds.

study-specific measurement: Values for a study-specific attribute.
example: 1112:01
units: undefined

study time zone: The time zone at the study reference location, determined using the IANA Time Zone Database and a shapefile of these zones provided by efele.net.
example: Mountain Standard Time
units: none

tag technical specificationValues for a tag-specific technical attribute.
example: 8.31, YES
units: undefined
same as: tag tech. spec.

tag voltage: The voltage as reported by the tag.
example: 2895
units: millivolts (mV)

tilt angle: The angle in which the tag is tilted in respect to the gravitational angle (0–180).
example: 78
units: degrees

tilt X: Tilt provided by the accelerometer for the X axis.
example: 0
units: g forces (1 g = 9.8 m s^-2)

tilt Y: Tilt provided by the accelerometer for the Y axis.
example: 0
units: g forces (1 g = 9.8 m s^-2)

tilt Z: Tilt provided by the accelerometer for the Z axis.
example: 1
units: g forces (1 g = 9.8 m s^-2)

timestamp: The date and time a sensor measurement was taken.
example: 2008-08-14 18:31:00.000
format: yyyy-MM-dd HH:mm:ss.sss
units: UTC (Coordinated Universal Time) or GPS time, which is a few leap seconds different from UTC

transmission timestamp: The date and time that the data record was transmitted.
example: 2014-03-11 18:06:44.000
format: yyyy-MM-dd HH:mm:ss.sss
units: UTC (Coordinated Universal Time) or GPS time, which is a few leap seconds different from UTC

underwater count: The number of times the tag went underwater during the current measurement period (30 minutes).
example: 11
units: none

underwater time: The amount of time the tag was underwater during the current measurement period (30 minutes).
example: 547
units: seconds

UTM zone: The UTM zone, selected based on the location of each event, used to convert locations from decimal degrees to UTM.
example: 14N
units: none

vertical error numerical: An estimate of the vertical error of the location. These values can be described using location error percentile and location accuracy comments.
example: 112
units: m

visible: Determines whether an event is visible on the Movebank Search map. Values are calculated automatically, with FALSE indicating that the event has been marked as an outlier by manually marked outlier or algorithm marked outlier. Allowed values are TRUE or FALSE.

waterbird workshop: behavior: Behavioral categories used for analysis as part of the Movebank waterbird workshop in Constance, Germany, September 2009. Values are chosen from a controlled list:

nesting: An observation where an animal is observed, or determined to be, at its nest site.
roosting: An observation where an animal is observed, or determined to be, roosting.

waterbird workshop: deployment special event: Special events in the deployments used for analysis as part of the Movebank waterbird workshop in Constance, Germany, September 2009. Values are chosen from a controlled list:

biologically irrelevant: An observation that is found to be biologically irrelevant, for example because there was no animal wearing the tag.
death: The location where an animal is found or determined to be dead.
release site: The location where the animal is released.
tag failure: The observation where the tag was found, or determined, to have failed.

waterbird workshop: migration state: Migration states used for analysis as part of the Movebank waterbird workshop in Constance, Germany, September 2009. Values are chosen from a controlled list:

breeding grounds: in the breeding grounds
fall migration: on fall migration
migration other: on a seasonal migration
migration to molt: on migration to molting site
molt site: at a molting site
spring migration: on spring migration
stopover: in a stopover site during a migration
summer non-breeding adult: in a summer non-breeding grounds, animal is an adult
summer non-breeding immature: in a summer non-breeding grounds, animal is immature
winter grounds: in the wintering grounds

Data terms for Argos Doppler shift data

These terms are used to describe location estimates and other diagnostic parameters provided by Argos.

Argos altitude: Altitude used for location calculation, Argos DIAG format file (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011)
example: 27
units: meters

Argos best level: Best signal strength, Argos DIAG format file (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: -117
units: decibels (dB)

Argos calculated frequency: Calculated frequency, Argos DIAG format file (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 401.6732709
units: hertz (Hz)
same as: Argos calcul freq

Argos error radiusGeometric dilution of precision, a measure of the effect of the geometry of the satellite-beacon configuration on location accuracy, Argos diagnostic data (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 229
units: meters

Argos GDOP: One standard deviation (sigma) of the estimated location error, assuming isotropic error, Argos Diagnostic Data (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 254
units: m/Hz

Argos latitude 1: Solution 1. platform latitude in degrees and thousandths of degrees, Argos DIAG format file (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 19.493
units: decimal degrees, WGS84 reference system
same as: Argos lat1

Argos latitude 2: Solution 2. platform latitude in degrees and thousandths of degrees, Argos DIAG format file (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 14.773
units: decimal degrees, WGS84 reference system
same as: Argos lat2

Argos location class: The location class retrieved from Argos. Allowed values are 0, 1, 2, 3, A, B, and Z (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: A
units: none
same as: Argos lc

Argos longitude 1: Solution 1. platform longitude in degrees and thousandths of degrees, Argos DIAG format file (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 99.712
units: decimal degrees, WGS84 reference system
same as: Argos lon1

Argos longitude 2: Solution 2. platform longitude in degrees and thousandths of degrees, Argos DIAG format file (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 120.286
units: decimal degrees, WGS84 reference system
same as: Argos lon2

Argos Nmessages: The number of messages received [to calculate location], Argos DIAG format file (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 8
units: none
same as: Argos nb mes

Argos Nmessages 120: The number of messages received by the satellite at a signal strength greater than -120 decibels, Argos DIAG format file (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 2
units: none
same as: Argos nb mes 120

Argos NOPC: The number of plausibility checks successful (from 0-4), Argos DIAG format file (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 3
units: none

Argos orientationThe orientation of the semi-major axis of the error elipse, Argos diagnostic data (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 83
units: degrees (from north when heading east)

Argos pass duration: Time elapsed between the first and last message received by the satellite, Argos DIAG format file (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 118
units: seconds

Argos quality indicator: This indicator gives information on the transmitter in terms of two digits, X and Y. X is the first digit and indicates residual error on the frequency calculation; Y is the second digit and indicates transmitter oscillator frequency drift between two satellite passes. Values provided in Argos DIAG format files (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011). Values obtained through some Argos channels do not include leading 0s, so 1-digit values indicate X = 0 and blank values or values of "0" indicate both X and Y = 0. Allowed values are

X=0: No calculation of residual frequency error (fewer than four messages received)
X=1,2,3: Unsatisfactory convergence of calculation
X=4: Residual frequency error > 1.5 Hz
X=5: 0.15 Hz < residual frequency error < 1.5 Hz
X=6: Residual frequency error < 0.15 Hz
Y=0: No check on transmit frequency drift, as the two results are more than 12 hours apart.
Y=1: Frequency discrepancy > 400 Hz Probably due to transmit frequency discrepancy, change of oscillator, etc.
Y=2: Previous location is less than 1/2 hour old. Frequency discrepancy > 30 Hz, i.e. F/F (over 10 min) >2.5 E-8
Y=3: Frequency drift > 4 Hz/minute, i.e. F/F (10 min) > 1.10-7
Y=4: Frequency drift < 4 Hz/minute, i.e. F/F (10 min) < 1.10-7
Y=5: Frequency drift < 2 Hz/minute, i.e. F/F (10 min) < 5.10-8
Y=6: Frequency drift < 1 Hz/minute, i.e. F/F (10 min) < 2.5 . 10-8
Y=7: Frequency drift < 0.4 Hz/minute, i.e. F/F (10 min) < 1.10-8
Y=8: Frequency drift < 0.2 Hz/minute, i.e. F/F (10 min) < 5.10-9

example: 68
units: none
same as: Argos Iq

Argos satellite ID: The satellite identifier, Argos diagnostic data (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 42
units: specific to the sensor

Argos semi majorLength of the semi-major axis of the error ellipse, Argos diagnostic data (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 300
units: meters

Argos semi majorLength of the semi-minor axis of the error ellipse, Argos diagnostic data (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 175
units: meters

Argos sensor 1: The value of the first Argos sensor, Argos DIAG format file (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 229
units: specific to the sensor

Argos sensor 2: The value of the second Argos sensor, Argos DIAG format file (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 42
units: specific to the sensor

Argos sensor 3: The value of the third Argos sensor, Argos DIAG format file (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 3
units: specific to the sensor

Argos sensor 4: The value of the fourth Argos sensor, Argos DIAG format file (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 63
units: specific to the sensor

Argos transmission timestamp: UTC time (hours, minutes, seconds) for the location, Argos DIAG format file (definition from Argos User's Manual 2011).
example: 26.03.12 00:27:32
format: dd.MM.yy HH:mm.ss
units: UTC (Coordinated Universal Time)

Argos valid location algorithm: Indicates which of the two location estimates provided by Argos is the valid location, using a user-selected filter algorithm in Movebank. Allowed values are

1: The Argos filter algorithm has chosen the primary location (solution 1, lat1/lon1) as the valid location.
2: The Argos filter algorithm has chosen the alternate location (solution 2, lat2/lon2) as the valid location.

units: none

Argos valid location manual: Indicates which of the two location estimates provided by Argos is the valid location as chosen by the user. Allowed values are

1: The user has chosen the primary location (solution 1, lat1/lon1) as the valid location.
2: The user has chosen the alternate location (solution 2, lat2/lon2) as the valid location.

units: none

Data terms for location data derived from British Antarctic Survey solar geolocators

These terms are used to describe location estimates and other parameters provided by archival light level geolocators from the British Antarctic Survey (licensed to Biotrack in 2011) in .trj format files. Note that the "longitude" attribute in these files is imported as longitude (decimal degree). The data owner imports both BAS compensated latitude and BAS stationary latitude, and chooses one of these to also import as latitude (decimal degree).

BAS compensated latitude: Latitude compensated for longitudinal movement assuming uniform movement, .trj (definition from British Antarctic Survey Geolocator Manual v. 8, 2010).
example: 86.03
units: decimal degrees, WGS84 reference system

BAS confidence: Confidence level of the fix, defined by the individual who processed the data (definition from British Antarctic Survey Geolocator Manual v. 8, 2010).
example: 9
units: none

BAS fix type: Time of day used to obtain location estimate (definition from British Antarctic Survey Geolocator Manual v. 8, 2010). Allowed values are

noon: The fix was obtained using sunrise followed by sunset
midnight: The fix was obtained using sunset followed by sunrise.

BAS mid value secs: The time of local noon/midnight as number of seconds since 1st Jan 1900 (definition from British Antarctic Survey Geolocator Manual v. 8, 2010).
example: 39734.64931
units: seconds

BAS stationary latitude: The latitude [of the location estimate] calculated using a stationary target (definition from British Antarctic Survey Geolocator Manual v. 8, 2010).
example: 84.18
units: decimal degrees, WGS84 reference system

BAS transition 1: The time of sunrise (definition from British Antarctic Survey Geolocator Manual v. 8, 2010).
example: 12:44
units: GMT (Greenwich Mean Time)

BAS transition 2: The time of sunset (definition from British Antarctic Survey Geolocator Manual v. 8, 2010).
example: 16:35
units: GMT (Greenwich Mean Time)

Data terms for data from e-obs GPS tags and accelerometers

These terms are used to describe location estimates, acceleration measurements and other parameters provided by e-obs in logger.bin format files.

e-obs acceleration axes: This tells you about the enabled ACC axes, like X and/or Y and/or Z (definition from "e-obs GPS-acceleration-tags application note: How to use the acceleration sensor, interpret, analyse its data and how to get values in m/s^2", 2011).
example: XYZ
units: none

e-obs acceleration sampling frequency per axis: This is the sampling frequency for one axis. Don't mix this up with the sampling frequency for all axes together. For example if you have three ACC axes enabled, then the sampling frequency for all axes together is three times the sampling frequency for one axis. The sampling frequency is measured in Hertz, which is the same as 1/second. For example a sampling frequency of 10 Hz means that you get 10 samples per second (definition from "e-obs GPS-acceleration-tags application note: How to use the acceleration sensor, interpret, analyse its data and how to get values in m/s^2", 2011).
example: 5.93
units: hertz (Hz)

e-obs accelerations raw: Acceleration along the X and or Y and or Z axes of the tag, depending on which axes were activated on the tag as described in the field e-obs acceleration axes. Measurements alternate one measurement for each active axis in alphabetical order. The values are digital readings between 0 and 4095 of the analogue digital converter on the tag, and can be converted to m/s^2 with proper calibration. These samples are made at the rate described by the field e-obs acceleration sampling frequency per axis starting with the first sample at the time described in the field e-obs start timestamp. Tags with numbers e-obs numbers 2242 and higher, which began being provided in spring 2012, have Y-axis values in the opposite direction from those in older tags (definition from "e-obs GPS-acceleration-tags application note: How to use the acceleration sensor, interpret, analyse its data and how to get values in m/s^2", 2011; Wolgang Heidrich, e-obs Digital Telemetry, personal communication, 2012).
example: 1844 1889 1653 1845 1896 1653 1837 1897 1653 1842 1898 1650 1844 1899 1644 1840…
units: none (values must be calibrated and converted)

e-obs activity: An indication of activity since the previous data message was sent, based on raw acceleration data, provided in SMS messages sent by e-obs GSM tags. Values range from 0 (least activity) to 256 (most activity). The number of acceleration measurements used to determine activity is indicated in e-obs activity samples (Wolgang Heidrich, e-obs Digital Telemetry, personal communication, 2013).

e-obs activity samples: The number of acceleration measurements used to calculate e-obs activity divided by 171. This is provided in SMS messages sent by GSM tags (Wolgang Heidrich, e-obs Digital Telemetry, personal communication, 2013).

e-obs battery voltage: Unloaded battery voltage (definition from Franz Kümmeth, e-obs Digital Telemetry, personal communication, 2012).
example: 3712
units: millivolt (mV)

e-obs fix battery voltage: Loaded battery voltage, i.e. battery voltage when GPS module is acquiring a fix (definition from e-obs Digital Telemetry Manual for DataDecoder Software, 2010; Franz Kümmeth, e-obs Digital Telemetry, personal communication, 2012).
example: 3535
units: millivolt (mV)

e-obs horizontal accuracy estimate: A horizontal (in)accuracy estimate, calculated by the GPS module (definition from e-obs Digital Telemetry Manual for DataDecoder Software, 2010; Franz Kümmeth, e-obs Digital Telemetry, personal communication, 2012).
example: 35.07
units: meters

e-obs key bin checksum: A checksum of the original binary data, so that Movebank can quickly compare different lines by comparing their checksums (definition from "e-obs GPS-acceleration-tags application note: How to use the acceleration sensor, interpret, analyse its data and how to get values in m/s^2", 2011).
example: 4152324118
units: none

e-obs speed accuracy estimate: A speed (in)accuracy estimate, calculated by the GPS module. The speed accuracy estimate (better named "inaccuracy estimation")  may show very high values, since the GPS module calculates a very conservative value. These speed measurements are potentially very inaccurate when interpreting the data (definition from e-obs Digital Telemetry Manual for DataDecoder Software, 2010; Franz Kümmeth, e-obs Digital Telemetry, personal communication, 2012).
example: 6.58
units: meters per second

e-obs start timestamp: The date and time of day when the acceleration burst belonging to this line begins. The exact time of the first sample is a little later (up to 1 second) for older e-obs tags, especially when the ACC-pinger is enabled (4 pings before the start of eah ACC burst) (definition from "e-obs GPS-acceleration-tags application note: How to use the acceleration sensor, interpret, analyse its data and how to get values in m/s^2", 2011).
example: 2011-01-03 13:45:00.000
units: GPS time (GPST), which is a few leap seconds different from UTC (Coordinated Universal Time)

e-obs status: The record status, from e-obs GPS/accelerometer tags (definition from e-obs Digital Telemetry Manual for DataDecoder Software, 2010). Allowed values are

A = position and time within accuracy masks
B = only time of week and weeknumber valid
C = only weeknumber valid
D = no valid data

example: D
units: none

e-obs temperature: Temperature; this value is not calibrated and therefore very inaccurate (definition from e-obs Digital Telemetry Manual for DataDecoder Software, 2010).
example: 45
units: degrees Celsius

e-obs type of fix: The type of fix of data from e-obs GPS/accelerometer tags (definition from e-obs Digital Telemetry Manual for DataDecoder Software, 2010). Allowed values are

3 = 3D fix
2 = 2D fix

example: 3
units: none

e-obs used time to get fix: The amount of time that was needed for this GPS fix; interesting for estimating power requirements (definition from e-obs Digital Telemetry Manual for DataDecoder Software, 2010).
example: 22
units: seconds

Data terms for Fleetronic tags

This term is used to describe measurements provided by Fleetronic GPS-GSM loggers.

Fleetronic switch: The "switch" value provided by Fleetronic. Identifies the action carried out by the tag, relevant for logger performance testing and data filtering (definition from Kris Van Uffelen, Fleetronic, personal communication 2014). Allowed values are

0 = SV_LowestPositionSwitch
6 = SV_PositionAcceleration
48 =SV_PowerUp
49 =SV_InternalStatus1
64 =SV_Network
69 =SV_ReceivedSMS
72 =SV_SettingsAccepted
77 =SV_TimeAlive
112 =SV_LcdData1

example: 6
units: none
same as: flt switch

Data terms for GeoTrak PTTs

These terms are used to describe measurements provided by GeoTrak PTTs (previously provided by North Star).

GeoTrak sys week: The week number since the device was activated (definition from GeoTrak's "PTT Decode Overview", 2014).

example: 4
units: weeks
same as: gt sys week

GeoTrak tx count: The number of transmissions since last rollover (definition from GeoTrak's "PTT Decode Overview", 2014).

example: 4840
units: none
same as: gt tx count

GeoTrak activity count: The number of motion triggers detected since the last rollover (definition from GeoTrak's "PTT Decode Overview", 2014).

example: 136
units: none
same as: gt activity count

Data terms for Microwave tags

These terms are used to describe measurements provided by tags from Microwave Telemetry.

height (raw): Estimates of height of the tag above ellipsoid provided by Microwave GPS tags. Values are imported as raw text values because correction or processing are sometimes required to derive the correct height estimate.

example: 425, 2D fix
units: meters

Microwave activity count: The activity counter value. This value increments when the PTT is moving while it is transmitting. If the activity counter is constant for two or more transmission periods (and the GPS locations are unvarying), you should consider the possibility that the PTT has become detached or the bird is down (definition from the Microwave Telemetry, Inc. Solar Argos/GPS PTT-100 Field Manual, 2012).

example: 209
units: none
same as: mw activity count

Microwave show in KML: Used by Microwave GPS tags to flag implausible locations. Allowed values are TRUE or FALSE; implausible locations have the value FALSE.

Data terms for Ornitela tags

This term is used to describe measurements provided by tags from Ornitela.

Ornitela transmission protocol: The way in which the data from Ornitela tags were transmitted. Allowed values are SMS or GPRS..

units: none

Data terms for TechnoSmart tags

These terms are used to describe measurements provided by tags from TechnoSmart.

TechnoSmart activity: An indication of whether an animal is active. Possible values are “active” and “inactive”. The threshold used to define activity is dependent on how the tag is configured by the user.

example: Active
units: none

TechnoSmart signal quality: The strength of satellite reception. Ranges from 0 to 500. Higher values indicate better reception.

example: 230
units: none

References

Argos User's Manual, 2011

British Antarctic Survey Geolocator Manual v. 8, 2010

e-obs Digital Telemetry Manual for DataDecoder Software, 2010

e-obs GPS-acceleration-tags application note: How to use the acceleration sensor, interpret, analyse its data and how to get values in m/s^2, 2011