What bird is that?
There’s a small brown bird at the feeder and there’s no one to help you identify it.
Don’t you wish you had a personal assistant to help you?
Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s free Merlin Bird ID app for Android and iPhone does just that. Introduced in 2014, the app gets smarter every year. It uses the simple information you already know — your location, the date and the words “small,” “brown,” and “at the bird feeder” — to narrow your choices and identify the bird.
You can even take a picture with your cellphone and ask Merlin what it is.
Merlin’s answer is a list of the most likely suspects with photos, sounds and descriptions. It even tells you if the bird is uncommon or rare for your date and location. That’s one of the best clues you’ll find anywhere because an “uncommon” species in March can become “common” in May.
Watch the video below to see how Merlin works, then download the app.
Merlin’s a wizard at identifying birds!
p.s. What birds are at Marcy Cunkelman’s feeder shown above? She took the photo in Indiana County, PA, in early February 2014.
(bird photo by Marcy Cunkelman, Merlin Bird ID screenshot and video from Cornell Lab of Ornithology)