New versions of software and the supporting website.



New version of the Recorder website

Recorder is one of the leading software programmes for the collation and management of species and habitat data in the UK. It is currently used in the majority of Local Record Centres in the UK. Local Record Centres are regional centres that specialise in the collation of biodiversity data from organisations and individuals in their local area and comprise a network throughout the UK. Recorder is also used by a number of national recording schemes and societies, a range of organisations and individual recorders in the UK, as well as in a growing number of European countries.


Since its creation in the late 1980s, Recorder development has focused on supporting key standards in wildlife recording, ensuring that data held in, and exchanged between, recording organisations is of the highest quality. These standards and concepts have included comprehensive validation of data as it is entered, ownership of data (avoids data duplication) and key concepts from the National Biodiversity Network (NBN) such as descriptions of data (metadata) and a taxon dictionary (maintained by the Natural History Museum). The NBN Trust is a partnership between public and voluntary sector organisations, formed to promote the exchange and reuse of biological data for conservation, research and environmental management. Data submitted to the NBN is made available to all on its website (


A new version of Recorder (6.14) was released in August 2009 and is now available. Innovations include improved security, the ability to store a potentially unlimited number of local species and habitat records (essential for those who manage very large collations), faster imports of large datasets and additional enhancements which provide more powerful and reliable reporting, mapping and exporting. The additional functionality has created further efficiency savings and greatly improved the flexibility, reliability and standard of outputs produced by recording organisations, whether that is reporting on species designations for a local planning enquiry or increasing the ease and efficiency of data flow to the NBN for wider public use. 


The latest version of the Recorder software is accompanied by a brand new website ( The site provides all the latest information about Recorder and includes details of the key features of the software, latest downloads (to upgrade the species dictionary, software or add-ins), a resource centre for additional help and online tutorials as well as background information, links to the Recorder Wiki and NBN Forum, and a step by step guide to how to install and order the 1:50,000 Ordnance Survey map tiles.


The Recorder project is steered and funded by representatives from the JNCC, Natural England, Countryside Council  for Wales, Northern Ireland Environment Agency, National Parks and Wildlife Service, Scottish National Heritage, Musée National d'Histoire Naturelle du Luxembourg (Luxembourg), Zentrum für Biodokumentation (ZfB, Germany) and Bundesamt für Naturschutz (BfN, Germany). The project would also like to acknowledge the additional funding made available from DEFRA for key elements of the development of Recorder 6.14.


Lynn Heeley

Recorder Project Manager

Tel: +44 (0) 1733 866858