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Monday, November 25, 2019

Review: Bat Call Identification Software (BCID) Part 2 Of 2

Bat Call Identification Software Review (BCID) Part 2 Of 2

During my most recent, extensive testing, I've found BCID software to be very accurate when identifying (predicting) bats down to species. It provides a neat / uncluttered result file (.xls format) along with the relevant accuracy (estimate) data. Which is to say, how "sure" BCID is, as to the ID of the bat species.

The software installs easily, directly after downloading. BCID software has no problems handling files/recordings from all major bat detector manufacturers.
BCID was designed to handle large sets of data; and is capable of analyzing approximately 2,600 call files per minute. 

By default, BCID automatically analyzes all of the zero-cross recordings contained in the user specified file folder.

It is compatible with both zero-crossing and full-spectrum recordings of bat sounds. Selecting your detecting location, under the Species tab, is straightforward. Two states are shown, in my example screenshots below:


 
New York

South Carolina


The User Manual for this software program, is accessible from withing the software itself. By clicking the 'Help' tab; the 7th (and last) tab on the right hand side of the main screen.
Clicking the 'View Manual' button brings up the latest User Manual (Ver 2.8a, 4-29-19). It is produced in a very well laid out, and easy to read format.

Points of interest in the BCID User's Manual are:

  • Pages 4 -to- 18 clearly describe the functions of each of the program's main tabs.
  • Page 19 and 20 provide tables of accuracy rates (examples). Demonstrating the program's ability to accurately discriminate between bat species.
  • Pages 21 and 22 cover troubleshooting, suggestions, and the process for reporting any bugs a user might encounter.
I should add, that during my extensive test period, I did not encounter any bugs.

Pros 
  • Has a very easy to use, simple interface.
  • Uncluttered, clearly readable results report.
  • Printing results/reports is 2 clicks away.

Cons
  • More expensive than it's closest competitor (Kaleidoscope).
  • Customization of ID sensitivity, settings, etc. not as easy as K-Scope.

BCID Software may be ordered directly from The Bat Call Identification Website.

It's very refreshing to use a bat call ID software as uncluttered and easy to use, as BCID. I enjoy printing out the results/report files listing the bat species recorded.

There are still many Professionals, Ecology Firms, and Organizations who prefer to use zero-crossing recordings for their bat surveys, and sometimes even research. In situations where ZC format is the predominant method of recording, BCID software should be given very serious consideration.

Since I am also in the process of reviewing new bat detecting instruments; chief among them being The AnaBat Scout from Titley, as well as optional microphones (designed for The AnaBat Swift) I expect to be adding some more info to this part of The BCID software review.

Until then,

Happy bat detecting! 

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