A lot of exciting developments have happened recently with eBird, and we wanted to share those with you, as well as express our gratitude and appreciation for all that you eBirders have helped bring to life. We hope this overview provides a picture of the current direction of eBird, while also highlighting some features and details about eBird that you might not have known before.
1) Thanks to the efforts of eBirders worldwide, 10,197 species are represented in eBird (98% of the world’s birds), submitted by 262,109 users from 2,774,557 locations across every country in the world, totaling 262.6 million bird observations. Almost 10 million observations were submitted in May 2015 alone.
2) Adding your sightings to eBird allows you to keep track of your lists automatically, while simultaneously providing data for science, resulting in more than 100 publications to date. By reporting the birds in your backyard, you’re supporting global bird conservation and science in a way that has never before been possible.
3) With the global eBird community entering their sightings, planning a trip with eBird has never been easier. Whether you want to know about all the birds at the pond down the street, or have always wanted to know more about a single bird (Spoon-billed Sandpiper anyone?), look no further than eBird. How about birding hotspots worldwide? Bar Charts of bird occurrence in a region? All that information is waiting, and much more.
4) As of mid-June, there is the FREE eBird Mobile app, currently available for iOS, and soon to be on Android in a few months. This app is available in 5 languages: Spanish, French, Chinese (Traditional), German, and English. Turkish and Portuguese (both Brazil and Portugal) will be following shortly.
5) On the subject of translations, eBird is thoroughly multi-lingual, with full website support in seven languages (English, Spanish, French, Traditional Chinese, German, Turkish and Portuguese) and partial support (bird names) in 18 languages. Do you want your language represented? Write to us.
6) Since 2010, eBird has been available for every country worldwide, with the core web site functioning globally for all users. In these five short years, we have been fortunate to build great partnerships outside of the initial scope of the Americas. This includes the recently launched customized portals of eBird Taiwan and eBird India, as well as PortugalAves, New Zealand eBird, Eremaea eBird, and the brand new eKuşbank—eBird in Turkey. In addition to the eBird portals outside the Americas, there are also the great New World portals, including eBird Canada, eBird Quebéc, eBird Caribbean, Puerto Rico eBird, aVerAves (Mexico eBird), eBird Centroamérica, eBird Argentina, eBird Chile, and eBird Perú.
7) eBird is geared toward capturing your birding in a meaningful way, but more rigorous projects can also be run through the platform. Right now eBird is being used to run everything from shorebird surveys in Perú to the Wisconsin Breeding Bird Atlas. View Golden-winged Warbler breeding evidence from Wisconsin on a map!
8) This fall we are launching a rich media upload tool—where you can add photos and audio to your eBird checklists with a quick drag and drop from your computer. You can see what a preview of that looks like here. If you’re interested in beta testing this, consider becoming an eBird Partner—sustaining the growth of eBird while getting access to new developments before they’re public.
9) Have historic bird sightings that aren’t in eBird? Not a problem. Upload historic sightings to eBird, and you can get your whole life’s birding endeavors tallied in short order, helping birds on a global scale.
10) All of this is possible because of the work of the more than 250,000 people who use eBird, and a team of dedicated volunteers who care as deeply about birds, science, and conservation as we do at eBird–there are currently 980 volunteer eBird reviewers who manage data quality worldwide, complemented by a team of nearly 400 volunteer hotspot managers. A massive thanks to all eBirders and to every reviewer for all that you do for eBird. Write to us if you are interested in helping with data quality review, data entry checklist creation and editing, hotspot management, website or mobile app translations, or species common name translations.