This One's for the Birds
May 2, 2009 2:18 AM   Subscribe

Because there are so many birds around the world, and because they often look very similar, you likely need a field guide to help you figure out what bird is in your backyard. Well, just in time for spring, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology has redesigned their wonderful All About Birds site and they can help you with building your skills. Don't forget to bring your checklist!
posted by shoesfullofdust (18 comments total) 32 users marked this as a favorite
posted by shoesfullofdust at 2:19 AM on May 2, 2009

I knew about All About Birds, but it would have been a while before I noticed the update. The building your skills section is slick! Thanks for the heads up.
posted by diogenes at 4:33 AM on May 2, 2009

Thanks for the link to country checklists. Been looking for something like that for ages.
posted by ginz at 4:34 AM on May 2, 2009

Ivory-billed Woodpecker is still on the checklist. That's pretty optimistic.
posted by Midnight Rambler at 5:52 AM on May 2, 2009

Cornell is my go to site on the web when I want info on birds. Good place.
posted by Atreides at 6:56 AM on May 2, 2009

I think my family will have a lot of fun watching the Nestcams, I'm checking out a barn owl sitting on eggs right now (in another tab).
posted by 445supermag at 7:37 AM on May 2, 2009

Awesome. Thank you!
posted by rtha at 8:33 AM on May 2, 2009

Is there a way to get a page that looks like this, but instead of just the "most popular" it shows a picture of every bird they've got an article on?

I just want to be able to scope all of them out and find the birds I'm looking for.
posted by CitrusFreak12 at 9:17 AM on May 2, 2009

CitrusFreak12, you might want to check out WhatBird's browser.
posted by shoesfullofdust at 11:20 AM on May 2, 2009 [1 favorite]

Oh this is timely. I went on my first ever Bird Watching walk with some experience birdwatchers yesterday and actually had an awesome time. I'd recommend it to anyone. I got some really nice shots of magpie geese, double-barred finch, crested pigeons, purple swamphen and a couple of kangaroos.

Unfortunately we had to leave before the final stages of the event were over, and the one thing that confused me was the surprise that we were missing out on the checklist part. Still, very nice to have my own checklist now thanks to the link above.
posted by b33j at 4:01 PM on May 2, 2009

Awesome post! I wish the descriptions were a little more detailed but this is great for quick and dirty identification.
posted by photoslob at 5:54 PM on May 2, 2009

Oh hell yes, shoesfullofdust! And you even entered my location. That is service. And it worked! Saw it pretty early on in the list. It was a gray catbird!

And from what I've heard on this page, I can tell you it's also one of the birds keeping me awake right now. Which, strangely, makes it less irritating, but also more distracting; "there's another one... there's... no.... wait no that one was definitely a catbird..."
posted by CitrusFreak12 at 2:12 AM on May 3, 2009 [1 favorite]

Nice site but it should really be called All About U.S. Birds.
posted by theCroft at 3:37 AM on May 3, 2009

To be fair, a fair majority of the birds of the United States winter in places other than the United States. Not to mention those birds introduced from Europe, like the wonderful starling, which can be found on both sides of the Atlantic.
posted by Atreides at 7:27 AM on May 3, 2009

Fantastic. I have a zillion birds this year, and I know the mockingbirds and grackles. I can't wait to find out what the wee little birds in my honeysuckle are!
posted by dejah420 at 6:56 PM on May 3, 2009

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology, producers of the popular site All About Birds of Northern North America, has also recently unrolled its Neotropical Birds site and eBird, a real-time, online checklist program which covers Alaska, California, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, Vermont, Wisconsin, Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, and New Zealand. Available in English, Spanish, and French.

You saw the penguins, right?
posted by shoesfullofdust at 10:44 PM on May 3, 2009

ChirpTracker is a twitter-like service for bird sightings. They also have a nice species guide. And Vimeo has a some nice channels that would be of interest to birders. I find the videos very helpful when it comes to identification.
posted by shoesfullofdust at 5:18 PM on June 1, 2009

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