News & Features

March eBirder of the Month Challenge

This month’s eBirder of the Month Challenge, sponsored by Carl Zeiss Sports Optics, focuses on getting photos and audio recordings of birds. Don’t worry, you don’t need to have an expensive camera setup to take part—even a quick snap or recording from your smartphone can make a difference! The eBirder of the Month will be chosen from all eligible checklists submitted during March with 1+ photo or audio recording. Each eligible checklist that you’ve added media to gives you one chance to win. Winners will be notified by the 10th of the following month.

Since the release of the eBird/Macaulay Library media upload tool, more than 2.5 million photos and sounds have been added to eBird checklists and archived in the Macaulay Library. This collection has become an amazing resource to document bird sightings worldwide, as well as providing a formidable dataset for researchers and birders worldwide.

One of the most exciting uses of this media collection has been for Merlin Photo ID—automatic identification of bird photos. The sightings and photos that you’ve contributed through eBird have made this possible. We’ve been excited to expand Merlin’s coverage to parts of Mexico this past month, and look forward to continued expansion throughout 2017 and beyond. The best part about this is that you can help! By taking part in this month’s eBirder of the Month Challenge, your photos help make it possible for us to deliver the best Merlin that we can. Add your photos and sounds today.

Merlin Photo ID lets you automatically identify photos of more than 650 species. With every photo you add to an eBird checklist, we get closer to being able to make this available for free for every bird in the world.

Each month we will feature a new eBird challenge and set of selection criteria. The monthly winners will each receive a new ZEISS Conquest HD 8×42 binocular. In addition, don’t forget about the 2017 Checklist-a-day Challenge—can you submit 365 eligible checklists this year?

Carl Zeiss Sports Optics is a proven leader in sports optics and is the official optics sponsor for eBird. “Carl Zeiss feels strongly that by partnering with the Cornell Lab we can provide meaningful support for their ability to carry out their research, conservation, and education work around the world,” says Mike Jensen,  President of Carl Zeiss Sports Optics, North America. “The Cornell Lab is making a difference for birds, and from the highest levels of our company we’re committed to promoting birding and the Lab’s work, so there’s a great collaboration. eBird is a truly unique and synergistic portal between the Lab and birders, and we welcome the opportunity to support them both.”

Find out more:

eBirder of the Month