A pretty common mistake beginning and amateur genealogists make is the “click & add” method of tree construction–especially when confronted by source confirmed information.  This can include birth and death dates, children and spouses of a family member, or even adding a non-relative with an identical name.  Ancestry.com makes this ever so easy!  What inevitably happens is that other Ancestry members find this incorrect info–and copy it to their trees as well.  Let’s call these folks ‘Tree Parrots.’

My guess is that many of us have deliberately or inadvertently done this–only later to find that things do not quite add up.  Once, I had a string of upstream ‘ancestors’ that I later removed after finding that the spouse of one “true” relative had been coupled with someone not who everyone thought they were.  One can’t fix this on anything but their own tree, as a lot of the parroting across a dozen or more trees no longer has an active genealogist to contact.  Watch out for those tree parrots, because they will poop on your party!