In Bolivia, eBird sightings are used to define the official bird checklist for certain protected areas, such as the Barba Azul Nature Reserve, in Beni, Bolivia. Asociacíon Armonía, the organization protecting the 11,000 hectare reserve, uses eBird reports from the reserve to define the bird list for conservation and tourism purposes. Bennett Hennessey, the executive director of Asociacíon Armonía, has kindly written about how this process has worked for them. His article can be found below. Read on to learn how your eBird sightings help preserve managers internationally, and also how you might be able to use eBird data to maintain checklists for your local hotspot, reserve, or protected area.
We would like to invite you to download our new eBird free iOS app for data entry. You can find the app at this link in iTunes:
In 2012, David Bell’s company BirdsInTheHand, LLC, released a mobile app called ‘BirdLog’, on Android and iOS devices. This app revolutionized the way birders recorded information in the field, and was the first and only app to tie directly into your eBird account for data entry. The app became so critical to eBird, that in 2014 the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and David Bell reached an agreement to transfer development and management the app to the eBird team at Cornell. All current iterations of BirdLog will be sunsetted in the near future, so it is important to make the switch to eBird mobile as soon as possible. The Android version will follow in a few months. Read on to learn more about the transition.
In appreciation for all those who have participated in eBird, we are pleased to offer special discounted subscriptions to the acclaimed bird life history resource: Birds of North America Online. This comprehensive resource includes information on distribution, breeding, migration, habitats, and behavior for over 700 different species of birds that breed in Canada and the United States. The accounts include photos and audio selections for all species covered. For those who would like to sign-up for a full subscription or to renew a current subscription, BNA Online is now available at the discounted rate of $25 for a 1 year subscription, $50 for a 2 year subscription and $75 for a three year subscription. Read on to find out more.
Please join us in congratulating Theresa Hyde of El Cajon, CA, winner of the May 2015 eBird Challenge, sponsored by Carl Zeiss Sports Optic. Our May winner was drawn from among those who submitted at least 5 complete checklists from May 9th, the Global Big Day . Theresa’s name was drawn randomly from the 2,640 eBirders who achieved the Global Big Day challenge threshold. Theresa will receive new ZEISS Conquest HD 8×42 binoculars for her eBirding efforts. We asked Theresa to tell us a little more about herself, her use of eBird, and her love of birds – read on for more!
In 2015, Noah Strycker is attempting to become the first person to see 5,000 species of birds—about half of the avian species on Earth—in one calendar year! Noah is now nearing the halfway point of 365 straight days of birding around the globe, with an itinerary covering 34 countries and all seven continents, on one continuous, all-out, global birding trip. To date he has covered Antarctica, South, and Central America, tallying a fantastic 2,701 species – over halfway to his goal. Noah is using eBird to keep track of his sightings and to help strategize during his quest, as well as to connect with many other birders as he travels. You can see his daily blog accounts on Birding Without Borders. He has been kind enough to write up a summary of his travels for us each month – you can find his notes from May here!
In a breakthrough for computer vision and for bird watching, researchers and bird enthusiasts have enabled computers to achieve a task that stumps most humans—identifying hundreds of bird species pictured in photos. Build in concert with the exceedingly popular Merlin app, the Merlin Bird ID tool lets you upload an image of a bird that you’ve photographed, and if the photo shows one of the supported species, it returns the correct species in the top 3 results, 90% of the time. It currently supports 400 species in North America, but will eventually be expanding to more species in North America, and worldwide.
This month’s eBirder of the month challenge, sponsored by Carl Zeiss Sports Optics, is aimed to improve our knowledge of breeding birds across the world. In the Northern Hemisphere, June is a crucial time in the annual cycle of many birds, as they build nests, hatch chicks, and hopefully fledge young – perpetuating the existence of their species. Although the rest of the world may not be in the throes of summer, there are still many signs of breeding to be found wherever you are! The eBirder of the month will be drawn from eBirders who submit at least 20 complete checklists containing at least one breeding code during June. These checklists must be entered by the last day of the month in order to qualify for the drawing. Winners will be notified by the 10th of the following month.
Please join us in congratulating Bernadette Ramer of Santa Cruz, CA, winner of the April 2015 eBird Challenge, sponsored by Carl Zeiss Sports Optic. Our April winner was drawn from among those who submitted at least 20 complete checklists containing one or more species of diurnal raptor in the month of April. Bernadette’s name was drawn randomly from the 2,870 eBirders who achieved the raptor challenge threshold. Bernadette will receive new ZEISS Conquest HD 8×42 binoculars for her eBirding efforts. We asked Bernadette to tell us a little more about herself, her use of eBird, and her love of birds – read on for more!
Are you an iOS or Android Developer? Do you know one? We have two new positions, one for an iOS developer and another for an Android developer to work on eBird and Merlin. That’s right — two additional positions! Upcoming projects will focus on improving the ability to enter checklists from the field and extending the Merlin app to add image-recognition functionality for identifying birds in the field with photos that were “just taken”. Both positions will work closely with the eBird and Merlin project leaders, UI designers, application developers, database administrators, computer scientists in a collaborative development environment. We want to find the best people possible for these important positions, so please send this information to anyone you think may be interested. More information on the iOS developer position is available here, and on the Android developer here. To apply for the position, please refer to Jobs at Cornell. For more information contact Sue Taggart.
If you’re in the Pacific Northwest, consider stopping in at the Mountain Bird Festival, over the weekend of 29-31 May later this month. The Mountain Bird Festival combines a celebration of the Klamath-Siskiyou Bioregion’s spectacular mountain birds and the stewardship ethic needed to ensure thriving landscapes for humans and wildlife. The keynote presentation will be given by eBird’s own Brian Sullivan, and this is a great opportunity to hear a presentation on some of the research and conservation that eBird sightings have prompted, as well as getting to experience an all-around enjoyable festival.