There are great online resources to assist you in identifying and learning more about the birds you see and hear in your backyard and elsewhere. We thought we’d compile a list of some of our favorites to get you started.
All About Birds
This website is maintained by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. It includes information on birding basics, a Bird ID App with 400 North American Birds (for iOS and Android), tips on how to attract birds, and more.
The All About Birds field guide is better for slightly more advanced birders, as it is harder to use for identification purposes. While you can browser birds by name and shape, you can’t limit it by region, color, or other identification factors. The Cornell Lab even provides some tips on how to ID birds.
The website has lots of beautiful photos, bird call recordings, and a ton of information. You can even sign up for a monthly eNewsletter with bird news, tips, and updates.
The Cornell Lab holds the Great Backyard Bird Count in February and Project FeederWatch in winter each year; these citizen science projects help scientists learn about bird populations and long-term trends in bird distribution and abundance.
Audubon’s Guide to North American Birds
When using this field guide, you can search for birds by taxonomic family and region or browse the illustrations of birds listed on the page. Each bird page has beautiful photography, information on feeding behavior, nesting, songs and calls, range, and more. There is a lot of great information to be found on the website. Again, this is for more advanced birders who are familiar with birds in their area.
Aubudon has a bird identification app for Kindle Fire, iOS systems, Android and HP touchpad: http://www.audubonguides.com/field-guides/bird-identification-app.html
eNature.com is a great identification tool for all sorts of wildlife. By using their field guides, you can limit your search by zip code or region. Try out their advanced search, which allows you to select birds by type, color, size, habitat, and region. This helps to limit down the number of photos for you to look at and makes it easier to identify the bird you are seeing. This site even has recordings of bird calls to go along with their photos and information.
Articles about Birding Basics for New Birders
If you’re looking for information on beginning birding or tips on how to start or learn more, check out these articles.
- Binoculars and Beyond: Nine Tips for Beginning Bird Watchers: This article, written by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology covers the equipment and tools you’ll need to bird watch.
- Birding for beginners: This article by Wildbirds.com provides some hints on how to increase your birding skills. It’s a good list with some additional resources.
- Tips for Bird ID: This article was written by the Cornell Lab and provides some beginning birding tips for identifying birds.