MASSBIRD is a new mailing list dedicated to the interchange of wild bird and birding information relevant to New England, particularly Massachusetts.

This list is intended for the discussion of local issues - such as birding locations, local conditions, reports of local rarities and unusual sightings, pelagic trip reports, legislative alerts, events and speakers in the area, and calls for volunteers in research and censusing activities. Hopefully, novice birdwatchers, visitors to our area, and our local experts alike, will share their questions and knowledge through this mailing list. Together we can make MASSBIRD a useful forum, sharing information on a real time basis.

Brookline Bird Club Hotline messages will continue to be distributed through the existing BBC email hotline distribution list only. However, except for BBC Hotline calls and announcements, all other traffic formerly on that list will move to MASSBIRD. At this time, Rare Bird Alerts (RBAs) for our area including the Eastern Massachusetts Voice of Audubon will continue to be posted to BIRDEAST only. Matters of general birding interest should continue to be posted to BIRDCHAT.


This mailing list is managed by MAJORDOMO software, which is similar to the LISTSERV software which runs BIRDEAST and BIRDCHAT on the national level. However, the content of commands to MAJORDOMO are a little different (see below). By using the MAJORDOMO software, messages that subscribers post to MASSBIRD will be sent out to the entire list of subscribers without manual intervention. Additional information about MAJORDOMO will be sent those subscribed to MASSBIRD.

Are there any posting rules?

Please include your name, location and email address in the body of every message that you post to MASSBIRD. Please keep your postings clear and concise. Keep in mind that your messages will go to a large, busy audience! A report of a Yellow-breasted Chat is welcome, but reports of starlings at your feeder are not.

How do I subscribe?

To be ADDED to the list, send a mail message in the following form:

subscribe massbird (your name here)

by email to

For example:
subscribe massbird (Barbara Volkle)

How do I send a message?

In order to POST a message to the list, address your message to:

Please include your name, location and email address in the body of every message that you post to massbird.

Digest Option

Instead of receiving individual messages from MASSBIRD as they are posted, you can receive a digest of recent postings. In other words, you will receive all the messages sent to MASSBIRD since the last digest was issued, rolled into one large email message. Although there is a delay in receiving your mail, you have less mail messages to manage. This is an option that many people prefer.

Many of you are familiar with the digest option in connection with LISTSERV managed email lists. The way majordomo manages the list is a little different. Majordomo manages massbird-digest as a separate list.

Unfortunately, I am NOT able to schedule the massbird-digest to be issued on a regular basis, such as nightly or every two days. The digest is automatically produced after a certain volume of messages are posted to MASSBIRD. As moderator, I can also issue a command to produce a digest. In the event of a major rarity, I will issue a command to produce an issue of the digest as soon as possible. At the current level of message volume, the digest is issued every 3-5 days.

If you are currently subscribed to massbird and wish to receive massbird-digest, you must first unsubscribe from massbird and then subscribe to the digest. Send a mail message to in the following form with these 2 lines only:

unsubscribe massbird
subscribe massbird-digest

If you are NOT currently subscribed to massbird and wish to receive massbird-digest, Send a mail message to in the following form: subscribe massbird-digest (your name here)

For example: subscribe massbird-digest (Barbara Volkle) In order to POST a message to the list, continue to address your message to

Do NOT send your message to!

If I have a question or problem?

If you have any questions or problems, contact the listowner, Barbara Volkle,

How will MASSBIRD change how I get birding information?
Join MASSBIRD and read what's happening with birds in our area today!

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Last updated March 16, 2007