~ The CBRC's Standards of Acceptance ~
is the link for the Western Birds index at
SORA where the CBRC annual reports are,
so you can read 'em and weep. :)
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The CBRC Standards of Acceptance
Often one can find in the CBRC annual reports records that
were rejected because the observation did not meet the CBRC's
standards of acceptance.
If you are like me, and didn't know the CBRC had any
standards, you may wonder what those standards are.
They don't have standards for reasons of rejection.
You can make up bald-faced lies to reject and that
is OK. For instance at the CBRC a member can write
"since when was the sky that blue in L.A. in June"
when the correct answer is the Miocene. That is
the acceptable standard of scientific review at the CBRC.
CBRC members can even lie to reject their relative's records
and this too meets the CBRC standards of objective review.
CBRC members can vote on the reports of someone they said
"I will never forgive you" to, that meets their standards.
A member can write "few realize how yellow ....." because
they not only know it all, they know what you know, or don't.
These are the acceptable standards of intellegence, pomposity,
and arrogance at the CBRC.
So without meaningful standards about whom can vote on who's
reports, or what reasons are used for rejection I find it
completely illogical that they have standards of observation.
The door does not swing both ways. It is a one-way street.
They have never published what these standards of observation
are, but as shown in the case of the McKay's Unicorn,
clearly an experienced expert seeing, hearing, and identifying
a bird they know well, without binoculars, is not an
acceptable bird record in California. The CBRC has said
themselves they have accepted records based on JonPaul VanExpert
seeing a bird in a manner that it would not have otherwise been
accepted, from Joe Shmo. So even their standards are not.
What a surprise this comes as.
CBRC standards are a floating bar, moved at will, depending
on who you are, as much as anything.
Once they rejected a Scissor-tailed Flycatcher (not mine)
that was observed flying horizon to horizon across the desert
for 30 seconds, in a place, at a time, when they are known
to occur. Apparently it takes longer than 30 seconds
for the CBRC to ID or accept one. I am reasonably
certain that was a binocular observation. It did not meet
their standards of acceptance, because it wasn't JonPaul VanExpert.
It takes a fraction of a second to ID the species, yet an observation
duration hundreds of times longer than that required to make an ID,
does not meet their top secret standards.
Of course Scissor-tailgate, #1991-035 was less than 30 seconds,
but photographed, yet still rejected, because of the CBRC standards
of evidence, reasons for rejection, and relatives reviewing relatives
reports, scientific objectivity, bias against reporter, etc..
In another case they rejected a Sooty Tern watched for nearly a
half-hour in the telescope because it was "too far to
seperate Bridled Tern". What is that distance they
can be seperated CBRC? By whom? The report stated the
observer just got back from four days in the Gulf Stream off Florida
studying Bridled Terns and that it was not one. That fresh
experience and knowledge did not meet the CBRC standards.
Can the CBRC publish how far away their standards dictate
these two species can be seperated?
So a calling fly over bare-eyed report from an expert is not good
enough, a 30 second binocular look is not good enough, and
a 30 minute telescope view is not good enough. I would
say they have no real standards, including one of acceptance,
beyond irrefutable photographs (which 1991-035 showed aren't even
always good enough). Invariably it is a very biased result.
How can they say they have standards if we can't see them?
Where is their chart that shows how far which Tern can be
ID'd, how long it takes to observe a Scissor-tailed Flycatcher
or Snow Bunting to accept? Do the binoculars have to cost
a certain amount of money to meet observation standards?
Why doesn't the public have a way to know these "standards"
of duration, distance for which species, if they are indeed standards?
Or is that just a BS rejection saftey valve when all else fails?
Then we could know when not to bother troubling them with a report.
That would save everyone a lot of time and trouble. Or is it just
too much fun rejecting records to tell us? Why has the CBRC kept
these standards of acceptance for species, duration and distance secret?
If they have standards, share them, let us see them, or they aren't
really standards at all.
The standard of acceptance for an observation is a personal
one, often different for differnt members, but on a birds as
unique as a Scissor-tailed Flycatcher, Snow Bunting, and Sooty Tern,
you can see the bar floats to their whim and predjudice.
There are hundreds of similarly rejected records, due to these
The problem is a certain group in the CBRC fancies themselves
the best. Joe birder can not report something further or
ID something faster than them. They can tell you how far
away you can ID something without really knowing what you know
about it. They know how long it takes for it to become an
observation that meets their standards, but they can't tell us what
these standard measurements are, because it is a game, not science.
Boycott the CBRC
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Wedge-rumped Storm-Petrel 1997
Desert rats decide seabirds
Zone-tailed Hawk 1994
the CBRC tongue-twist
Scissor-tailgate review discussion
Discussion 4 1991-035 review overview
CBRC Review Comments
on the 6/7/89 Scissor-tailed Flycatcher.
The CBRC & Me
The CBRC has standards?
CBRC standards , an oxymoron
My brother is my keeper?
CBRC scientific method another oxymoron from the morons