M.O.F.E.P (Missouri Ozark Forest Ecosystem Project) is a 100 yearlong study that started in 1991 aiming to investigate the long-term effects of logging on forest ecosystem dynamics. A key pillar of the MOFEP project is the Interior bird study which has the objective to "quantify the effects of even-age, uneven-age, and no forest management on the species composition, density, and reproductive success of forest songbirds". Because of its long-term nature, the early years of the MOFEP bird project saw data collection occurring manually using paper datasheets. Throughout the years much of the data has been digitized in parts or chunks depending on the study and research the data pertains to. One significant area that had been neglected in this digitization effort is the geographic location data for where nests were observed. Recent data collection seasons have employed handheld GPS devices to record nest locations on the spot to mitigate this issue, but there still existed a large dataset without digitally usable location data. Using ArcGIS mapping software, I was able to digitize almost 20 years of nest location data for analysis. This process required the development of automated workflows within ArcGIS as well as careful interpretation of the raw data physically recorded throughout the years. The result of this undertaking that spatial analysis of bird nest locations is now possible using modern software and research methods. Digitized locations from these early years means future data collected can combine with them to create a continuous source of long-term ecology data.
Spickelmier, Jonathan, "Using GIS to map M.O.F.E.P bird species nests" (2022). Posters. 15.