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How to move a checklist from “regular” eBird to Atlas eBird

By Nick Anich August 24, 2017
Gray Jay Perisoreus canadensis

The Wisconsin Breeding Bird Atlas is run through eBird, which means all of your sightings will show up in your personal lists like when using regular eBird, and all of the data we collect will be usable for scientists worldwide.

However, only checklists that are entered through the Atlas eBird portal ( will show up in the atlas outputs and results.

Any checklist with at least one breeding code on it must go in through Atlas eBird, and checklists with no breeding codes go through regular eBird (Or Wisconsin eBird, or your preferred local portal). Read more here on when to use the atlas portal.


Have an Atlas-appropriate checklist already in regular eBird? Move it to Atlas eBird in 3 easy steps!


First, change the portal. Open up the checklist (you can view all of your checklists by going to the My eBird tab and Manage my Checklists), and then in the lower right of the checklist, click the button called Change Portal. Then scroll down to “Wisconsin Breeding Bird Atlas”, and hit the green Change Portal button to save your choice.

Next, add a breeding code (if needed). Click “Edit Species List”, then “Add Breeding Code or Details” next to the species. Click “Choose the highest possible code” which will open up a dropdown list. Click to select the most appropriate breeding code (If more than one code occurred during this visit, choose the highest code). Then click the green “Save” button on the bottom right to save your changes.

Finally, verify your sightings are plotted within the atlas block in which you observed them. All reports to the atlas must be submitted in the atlas block in which they were found.

The Interactive Map is one easy way to view all the block lines in the state (works on smartphones also).

A surefire way to check where your plotted point falls in relation to the block lines is to start like you are ready to submit a new checklist through the atlas portal. Starting from the Atlas eBird portal (, go to “Submit Observations” and then in the “Find it on a Map” box, start typing the county, or Wisconsin. When you are about halfway through typing, the correct word will come up, click on it, and that will zoom you in to the Wisconsin map. Click the plus sign to zoom into your location.

The grid over the state is the atlas block lines. The thicker red boxes indicate atlas priority blocks, the most important atlas blocks to complete (though we welcome observations from anywhere in the state). If your pushpin is in the same block as the birds you observed with breeding codes, you’re done! If a block line cuts through the route you took for that checklist, and some coded birds are plotted on both sides of the line, please submit a second checklist in the neighboring block, if you can separate these birds out. (When submitting a new checklist, you don’t have to go through the change portal step, simply continue with submitting a checklist right now through the atlas portal, and give the birds breeding codes from the dropdown menu).

Thanks for contributing to the atlas! Every sighting of breeding behavior is a valuable piece of the puzzle!

Want to keep helping us atlas? Review our four main Data Entry Tutorials:
Atlas Data Entry 101: Incidental Observations
Atlas Data Entry 201: Complete Checklists
Atlas Data Entry 301: Understanding Breeding Codes & Timing
Atlas Data Entry 401: Location Precision