Latest News

Bernadette Ramer, April eBirder of the Month

Bernadette at Pt. Lobos State Preserve

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!

Attention iOS and Android Developers: Join eBird & the Cornell Lab of Ornithology


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.

Mountain Bird Festival 2015

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.

The Sagebrush Sea – Cornell Lab Film

Greater Sage-Grouse, Wyoming. Photo by Gerrit Vyn.

This week, PBS is airing a gorgeous film about the surprising biodiversity hidden in the West’s sagebrush steppe, and the complex challenges facing the region — if you care about birds and their habitats, this is worth your time. The Sagebrush Sea broadcasts this Wednesday evening, 8pm EST on PBS as part of the NATURE series — make sure to see the trailer below! This hour-long feature is produced by the Cornell Lab Multimedia team, and features top-notch videography from the western United States sagebrush.

Global Big Day—Worldwide Success

Common Potoo was one of the 320 species seen by Team Sapsucker in Panama

6013 species. 42920 checklists. 13664 people. One Global Big Day. Inspirational. Amazing. Unbelievable. These few words only begin to describe our feelings at watching eBird checklists flood in from the first ever Global Big Day on Saturday, 9 May. Groups worldwide mobilized their friends and contacts via Facebook, Twitter, email, and other outreach efforts to make this day the best day ever in eBird. On behalf of everyone here at the Cornell Lab, everyone in the wider eBird community, and everyone involved with the understanding and protection of birds worldwide, we want to give a huge THANK YOU to everyone who helped make Global Big Day such a resounding success.

American Bird Conservancy Award Presented for eBird

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, by Ryan Schain

The Cornell Lab and eBird are honored to be the recipients of the first ever Leon Levy Award for Innovation in Bird Conservation, awarded by the American Bird Conservancy (ABC). A key component of the vision for eBird is to collect bird observations from around the world and put them to use for science and conservation. Thanks to the ongoing efforts of eBirders who continue to submit data, and our global partners who run the project around the world, this vision is becoming a reality. It is rewarding to work alongside organizations such as ABC to further bird conservation efforts throughout the Americas and around the world. We deeply appreciate this opportunity. Please see more details from the official press release of the ABC, below.

Global Big Day Summary—It’s here!

Bush Thick-Knee, Brisbane, AU. Photo by Brian Sullivan.

At long last, the Global Big Day has begun! Some eBirders throughout Europe and the Americas may be unsure that we are aware what day it is, but in places like New Zealand and Australia, it is already May 9th, and the submissions have started to come in. The first checklist of the Global Big Day was submitted by Elliot Leach in Queensland, Australia, and featured a single species: Bush Thick-Knee! In preparation for the Global Big Day arriving everywhere else, this post is a summary of everything that we’ve published about the Global Big Day so far, to make it easiest for you to participate and contribute your sightings. Remember, all you have to do to contribute is go birding and then submit your data to eBird–how easy and fun is that? You don’t need to commit to a full 24-hours of birding on May 9th, even an hour or 10 minutes would be a great help. Read on for more information, and everything you need to know about the Global Big Day!

How To eBird the Global Big Day

May 9th is the inaugural Global Big Day, where eBird and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology are hoping to engage a worldwide network of birders to go out and count birds in support of global bird conservation. Our goals are to record more than 4,000 species of birds through eBird in a single calendar day, and to raise $500,000 for bird conservation. All you have to do to contribute is go birding and then submit your data to eBird–how easy and fun is that? You don’t need to commit to a full 24-hours of birding on May 9th, even an hour or 10 minutes would be a great help! Don’t forget, if you submit 5 or more checklists on May 9th, you could win free binoculars! We realize that many people who will be submitting their sightings to eBird on the 9th will be using it for the first time, so this article is intended as an introduction to both eBirding your Global Big Day, and to eBirding as a whole. Read on for information on how to submit your sightings, make them most valuable for conservation science, and to learn some tips and tricks for finding lots of birds!

Global Big Day—80 countries and counting

Will birders in East Asia find Bull-headed Shrike?

In preparation for the Global Big Day this Saturday, May 9th, we have been reaching out to countries around the world, bringing as many people together as possible to support global bird conservation. Birders, researchers, and conservationists from 80 countries and all 7 continents have confirmed that they’ll be participating so far, and we want to extend a sincere thanks to everybody involved for their efforts to protect the birds that we all care so much about. We are very excited to see how many species will be reported on the Global Big Day, while also helping to build a network of birders across the world that are connected by eBird – all united by a common goal and interest. It is a simple three step process to take part: go birding; submit your sightings to eBird; see your observations as part of a global dataset helping birders, researchers, and conservationists worldwide. It’s that easy! Read on for more information about specific efforts, and to find out if your country is taking part.

eBirding the World Big Year – April Update

One of Noah's bird highlights in April was this Chestnut-naped Antpitta at Rio Blanco, Colombia.

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 a third of the way through 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 and most of South and Central America, tallying a fantastic 2,349 species. 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 April here! In addition, Noah was sure to note that he’ll be in Oaxaca on the 9th for the Global Big Day! Where will you be?