Reporting Your Records Using a Spreadsheet

Spreadsheet Format

The easiest and most convenient method of submitting your records on a spreadsheet is to download the blank form available here and save it on your computer. Subsequently, whenever you have records to submit, copy your “template” version, complete it, save it under an appropriate name and send it as an attachment in an email to the County Recorder.

Your spreadsheet should show at least the following columns.

  • Date (e.g. 11/03/2016)
  • Location (e.g. Venus Pool)
  • Site Code (e.g. 2)
  • Grid Reference (e.g. SJ549061)
  • Species (e.g. Bittern)
  • Species Code (e.g. BI)
  • Count (e.g. 2)
  • Notes (e.g. “Seen from the main hide moving through typha to left of the main phragmites reed bed”.)

Note: data shown in RED are required fields; the remainder are optional.


Grid Reference. A grid reference is not essential but is very useful when identifying new locations. It may be left out if the site has a Site Code (see below) but is helpful in locating precise positions, especially in the case of breeding birds. A six-figure grid reference is best as this identifies the position to 100 m but a four-figure grid reference will do if you are not exactly sure where you are – this identifies the position to 1 km accuracy). For assistance with calculating grid references select this link.

Site Code. All observations are identified by the place where the bird is seen and the County Recorder has allocated a number to each place mentioned by an observer in the past. It really helps with the entering of records into the computer database if this reference number is included. To download the list of Site Codes (in pdf format) select this link. Leave this column blank if you cannot find the name on the list or you are unsure. If your records are from a new site please give some information about it.

Species Code. In the same way, all species have been allocated a letter code and, as with place, the species code assists the County Recorder with data input. Go here for the current list of Species Codes. Leave this column blank if you cannot find the species name on the list.

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Page updated: 06/04/2016