Monday, July 2, 2018

Scythebill 14.0.2 - the IOC 8.2 taxonomy is available

Scythebill 14.0.2 is now available with support for the new IOC 8.2 taxonomy and a few smaller bug fixes.  As always, download here, and let me know if you have any problems, either on Google+Facebook, or by email

IOC 8.2

The IOC taxonomy (now released twice a year) has its usual batch of changes.  Those affecting the largest number of birders will doubtless be:
  • A five-way split of Eurasian Magpie, some easy-to-see (Oriental Magpie), some extremely difficult (Asir Magpie, a Saudi Arabian endemic!).
  • A two-way split of Western Whipbird (an Australian species)
  • A two-way split of White-collared Seedeater
There's more splits and lumps;  you can see all the changes, including the dreaded lumps, at the IOC website.

Other changes of some interest, depending on one's interest in these sorts of things:
  • One wide-ranging subspecies of Japanese Bush Warbler (canturians) has moved into Manchurian Bush Warbler.  If you've seen Japanese Bush Warbler, you may need to be re-evaluate which species you've really seen.
  • Two enigmatic species - Madanga (endemic to the Indonesian island of Buru) and Sao Tome Shorttail (no prize for guessing which island it's found on) - have both been proven to belong to the Pipit and Wagtail family, Motacillidae!
  • Vangidae (formerly just the Madagascar Vangas) now includes Helmetshrikes, Wattle-eyes, Batises, and more.

Other changes

A few other changes snuck into Scythebill 14.0.2.

  • IOC 8.2 now includes names in the "Northern Sami" language of Scandinavia.  If you're one of its ~25,000 speakers, you're in luck!
  • Show Reports is now more consistent about showing sighting flags, like "uncertain identification" with (?) or "dead" with (†).
  • In Browse by location, the list of visits is now sorted most-recent-first, to be consistent with other parts of Scythebill.  And for places you've visited frequently, clicking a location selects (by default) the list of visits, and not the first species.