For the record, here is the email I sent for obscured birds in Ontario:
Hi Allison and others,
Please find below a list (table) of currently-obscured bird species for Ontario on iNaturalist, and how I think these statuses should be changed (I am volunteering to actually implement any changes once we get to that point).
This list includes all SAR and all species ranked S3 or below. I believe all these species are currently being obscured and that there are no additional species being obscured beyond these, although I haven’t checked completely comprehensively.
Long story short, most of the current obscuring is highly unnecessary. The first eight species I believe should remain obscured, the rest I believe should not be obscured. Please let me know any comments/concerns etc.
Thank you, Reuven Martin
|S-Rank||Species at Risk?|
|Species to remain Obscured|
|Very rare Southern Ontario breeding bird likely to be disturbed by birder targeting|
|Less vulnerable than the above, but should likely still be obscured|
|Disturbance is potentially a serious issue year-round at many sites|
|Species to be Un-obscured|
|Although very rare, most breeding sites are already widely publicised elsewhere (no additional risk from iNaturalist)|
|Targeted visits are unlikely to have a negative impact (due to species’ biology)|
|Extinct or extirpated species - if someone does add a historical observation there is no reason to hide it|
|Species is relatively widespread and many locations to see the species are already publicised and readily available (i.e. no additional risk from iNaturalist)|
|No risk of targeted disturbance except (maybe) at colonies, and many colony locations are easily obtained from other sources (e.g. eBird, scientific articles, SAR recovery strategies). All species are easily seen away from colonies.|
|American White Pelican||S2B||Y|
|Great Black-backed Gull||S2B||N|
|No serious risk of targeted disturbance in migration or winter, and breeding range is almost entirely or entirely inaccessible within Ontario|
|Now present only as a vagrant in Ontario with no conservation concerns|
|Abundant outside of breeding season, breeding disturbance is unlikely|
|Species is relatively common and targeted disturbance is not an issue|
|Eastern Palm Warbler||S1B||N|