Sharing technology, ideas, insights!
Call: +91 710 466 0336         Email: hello@sanisoft.com

Blog

eBird Widget Plugin [WordPress Plugin]

Why eBird Widget?

eBird Widget plugin solves the problem of showing data from eBird on to a website which runs wordpress. First I should elaborate what eBird is – http://ebird.org is a website which has a real-time, online checklist program. It does so by providing Global tools for birders which help in recording birds sightings, keep track of your bird lists, explore dynamic maps and graphs, share your sightings and join the eBird community and some more. The problem is that the sharing part is not too well evolved.

There is a API, albeit a somewhat limited one add to it that the users of eBirds are generally not programmers. I initially wrote a PHP wrapper class for the API but then having a wordpress widget which shows data for a region seemed like a better idea. This idea was endorsed by the good folks at http://birdcount.in  which is the site for citizen science project for caollecting data about bird sightings from all over India.

The plugin

The installation of the plugin is pretty straightforward. Download the zip from here and upload it from your your WordPress admin. Add the widget to a sidebar of your choice and visit the page. It may take a while for the data to appear but the page loading will not be affected.

Screenshots

Widget Settings

Add Country code or Sub-national code. Set Last number of days too.

The available country codes and state/subnational codes can be obtained from http://ebird.org/ws1.1/ref/location/list?rtype=subnational1&fmt=xml. Also if the region selected is large and the days back is too many fetching the data can take long. Experiment with these for your location to come up with an optimal number.

 

eBird Widget - Recent sightings

The recent sightings tab of the widget. Clicking on any of the item brings up a details pop-up like the one below.

 

ebird widget - Sighting details

Clicking of any of the sightings brings up a pop-up with details and link to the entire checklist, map of the location and Wikipedia page for the bird.

 

ebird Widget - Recent checklist

Based on the recent sightings the Checklist tab shows a list with location, name of the observer and approximate count.

Feedback welcome

This is an initial version of the widget. Bug reports, feedback and suggestions are most welcome. If there is enough interest I will develop more tools to integrate eBird checklist etc directly into your wordpress site.

 

P.S. Yes, some day I will put this up on wordpress.org but I find the process of getting approved etc tedious…

About the Author

Dr. Tarique Sani is a pediatrician and forensic expert by education. He is a PHP programmer of 'wrote the book' caliber and has to his credit several very popular open source as well as commercial PHP projects. He leads a team of dynamic programmers at SANIsoft who have in-depth understanding of Web scalability, development tools and usability practices with strong developmental skills in PHP, MySQL/PostgreSQL, HTML, Javascript, and Linux/Apache

4 comments

  1. Pingback: eBird widget plugin for Wordpress | Tarique's Travails

  2. Hi Tarique,

    What are the allowable regions and their codes when you’re setting up the plugin?

    For example, can I dive all the way down to a USA zip code or eBird Location (aka a patch)? Or do I have to stay at the country level?

    Thanks.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.