It is first important to note that not all data is appropriate to be stored directly in the AKN. To learn more about the types of data that are best suited for the AKN, the various options for sharing data with the AKN, and other data sharing options outside of AKN that can still benefit the AKN and its users, visit About AKN Data.
If you do decide your data are well suited for AKN, and decide to share them, there are a number of benefits to doing this. Likely, the most direct benefit is that you get immediate access to the Analyst tool, which will allow you to do basic analysis on your dataset. This tool is also slated to be improved, so all users will benefit from these improvement when they occur. You can access a short video tutorial about the Analyst tool under Tutorials and Guidance.
The other benefit of sharing your data is that it can add to the AKN dataset as a whole and help to strengthen results in some data visualization, analysis and summary tools. If you choose to share your records at a Sharing Level 2 or higher, your data will be aggregated with other AKN datasets and fed into AKN and AKN-connected tools that allow public data summary, visualization and analysis, such as the Phenology Tool, Observations Map, and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service’s IPaC tool. Essentially, your data contributions will become part of the whole and contribute to improving the robustness of any tools that use these data for summary or analysis now and in the future.
Many of these tools will be used by those trying to make better conservation and impact management decisions for birds, so you will indirectly be assisting in that process. In other words, sharing your data with AKN can benefit you, others and the birds in a number of ways!
To learn more about the options for sharing your data with the AKN, visit Upload, Enter and Manage Your Data.