If you are interested in Bird Photography, it is very helpful to tag along with an experienced birder. Otherwise, you will end-up lugging around a few bird books to help identify the wild birds. While I was out in the field with the Sigma 50-500mm lens, I had iBird Pro on my Android smartphone.
iBird has been available for the iPhone for over 2 years and it is finally available in the Android Market. There are different editions but iBird Pro is the most complete with 924 birds. Be warned – it’s database requires over 400megs to be stored on your SD Card and there have been issues with moving the actual 11meg app out of memory and onto the SD card. But, if you are a birder, it is a great reference!
iBird allows you to quickly find a bird by either typing its breed or browsing alphabetically. But, it really shines in its search capabilities with 30 different parameters. For example, I identified the Yellow-rumped Warbler by searching with colors and region.
iBird Pro includes detailed images for every bird, along with pointers to identify the breed, as well as the range, facts and even similar bird breeds. Best yet, it also includes bird calls! Bird calls can be very helpful to identify a bird that you are tracking. You can even play the calls loud enough for the birds to hear. I tried playing the calls for a variety of birds with mixed reactions. The ospreys just stared back, but the warblers and chickadees responded!
As long as you have the room on your SD card, iBird Pro is a great App to have. It sure beats lugging around those big bird books. Save the weight for that Sigma lens 😉
NOTE – iBird Pro is currently listed at full price on the iBird website but it is still 50% off in the Android Market.