Category Ranking History

Merlin Bird ID by Cornell Lab Category Rankings

Review Breakdown

Merlin Bird ID by Cornell Lab Review Breakdowns

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ASO Keywords

Keyword Rank
merlin bird id 1
bird identifier 2
ebird 3
merlin 4
bird identification 5


Jan, 2020


Jan, 2020



What's that bird? Merlin Bird ID helps you solve the mystery in 5 questions, or with a photo of a bird. First, Merlin asks you a few simple questions. Then, almost like magic, it reveals the list of birds that best match your description. Pick your bird, then delve into more photos, sounds, and ID tips about your bird! If you have a photo, Merlin can help there as well. Take a photo, choose from your camera roll, or snap the viewfinder of your zoom camera, and Merlin's powerful AI will suggest an identification almost instantly. Merlin is fun and easy to use—whether you’re curious about a bird you’ve seen once or you’re hoping to identify every bird that comes to your feeder. The answers are waiting for you with this free field guide app from the renowned Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Features • Created for birders and bird watchers of every level, Merlin identifies 4,500+ bird species across the United States, Canada, Mexico, Central America, South America, Europe, North Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Australia. • Merlin can identify a bird in a photo using powerful deep learning algorithms. Select your photo, tell Merlin where and when you took it, and you'll see a short list of suggested identifications. • Bird packs available for United States, Canada, Mexico, Europe, India, Guatemala, Belize, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, Ecuador, Brazil, Chile, India, Australia with more coming soon. • Explore birds by location and date with a list of species seen in the area. • Intelligent results. No more scanning through hundreds of possibilities! Merlin shows the birds near you that fit your description. • Customized location and date tools generate best answers for your neighborhood and time of year. • Powered by eBird to deliver the most accurate results based on millions of sightings from bird watchers across the world. • Enjoy more than 30,000 photos of birds, including males, females, and juveniles. • Learn ID tips from Cornell Lab of Ornithology experts. • Listen to beautiful bird sounds, including 14,000 songs and calls for each species curated by the Macaulay Library at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. • It’s all free! The Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s goal is to help you and millions of others to learn about birds.​ Merlin is the most advanced bird guide app available, and is expanding to new regions of the world. ••• Bird Packs ••• Merlin Bird ID currently includes bird identification help for the United States with regional packs for the: Northeast, Southeast, Midwest, Rocky Mountains, Southwest, Texas and Oklahoma, Alaska, and West Coast. Canada is covered by Eastern Canada and Western Canada packs. Mexico bird identification is available for each region of the country. Central America packs include Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama. South America packs include the Medellín, Bogota and Cali regions of Colombia, southeastern Brazil, and Chile. Bird identification help is also available for Europe with our Britain and Ireland pack, a Western Europe pack, Iberian Peninsula, a pack covering the Scandinavian countries and a comprehensive Western Palearctic guide. The Australia packs cover the southeast and north parts of the country. Asia bird ID help is available for India. These packs make Merlin the perfect pocket Field Guide to North American Birds, Hawaii Bird Guide, Mexico Bird Guide, Guatemala Bird Guide, Belize Bird Guide, Honduras Bird Guide, El Salvador Bird Guide, Nicaragua Bird Guide, Costa Rica Bird Guide, and Panama Bird Guide, Bird Guide to Colombia, Bird Guide to Brazil, Chile Bird Guide, India Bird Guide, Australia Bird Guide, Bird Guide to Europe, Bird Guide to Spain, Bird Guide to Portugal, Bird Guide to Britain, and Bird Guide to Scandinavia.

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Simple, effective, with one frustration
Dennis Hesselbarth on 2020-02-23
I’ve been a bird watcher for years using published guides. To my surprise, Merlin’s seemingly simplistic approach nearly always helps me identify birds. The sounds, unavailable in a book, sometimes clinches a doubtful ID. With a good telephoto lens, I’ve submitted photos of birds I was unsure about and found the photo ID amazingly accurate and helpful. That said, I too get frustrated with the geographically limited lists. I’ll identify a migrant bird and check Merlin to confirm, and it will not be listed. Only by faking my location can I access Merlin’s data and confirm my ID. If the developers would simply provide a location “override” button that would expand the list of birds to, say, the larger region, I would be thrilled. I am not bothered by Merlin’s lack of storing a bird life list. Pushing us to use eBird for our listings means we will provide much more detail about our sightings, which is more valuable to Cornell’s researchers. We “win” by having two top notch apps for free, while Cornell “wins” by having broad and helpful data. Please consider a donation to Cornell. Research and app development isn’t free.
Still needs some work
perefalcon on 2020-02-23
This app shows promise but when using the Bird ID part, is just as likely to give all wrong choices as to give a right choice. The habitat choices are too broad and its not clear at all how the app is using location information. Further issues concern the use of color selections. Even when selecting only one color, such as blue, the user is likely to get birds with no blue at all. When birding in grassland and shrub-steppe, which the user cannot specify, birds typical of forests are also suggested as possibilities. The best part of the app is the Explore Birds section. Many good photos of most species and often many calls and songs to compare to what the user heard. My only beef is the use of subspecies latin names when most bird guides don’t provide that information. Would be nice if the user could compare two easily confused species, such as sharp-shinned hawk and Cooper’s hawk or downy and hairy woodpeckers.
Fabulous app
Austinkroe on 2020-02-23
This is a must have app for any birder. I love using iBird to but it’s limited in area to North America. This app allows me to bird all over the world. I visit lots of foreign countries every year and hated not being able to look up new birds without the internet. Merlin has fixed many of those issues for me. Absolutely happy to have this on my phone. I really hope they keep adding areas in the future. I’d love to be able to bird the entire world with just one app. The photo confirmation part is simply amazing. I would have paid piles of money for this thing. Can’t believe they give it away for free. I can only imagine me loving this app even more in the future. Just wish I would have know about it earlier. Looking forward to them finishing their coverage of South America and Africa. Glad I have it for my upcoming trip to Columbia. Couldn’t be more pleased that I have it.
BanditQueen on 2020-02-23
I love this app. I like that I am helping people who study birds get the information to help them understand migration patterns and territories. I have been able to identify every bird I have looked up using this app; it's awesome and it is so easy! I only have to answer about four or five questions about the bird I've seen, and it is usually the first bird that comes up, but sometimes I have to scroll to look at two or three birds. Being able to hear the sounds of the birds is helpful, and I love learning about their feeding in migratory habits once I've spotted one in my own backyard. Prior to using this app, I didn't pay much attention to the different birds but it turns out that there is a nice variety of birds to come to my backyard. I have recommended this app to several friends, and they all agree that it is a very good app for bird identification.
Best App ever
Alwayswright458 on 2020-02-23
I absolutely love this app!! I’ve used plenty of other apps and none comparison to this!! Having the ability to narrow the field of which birds I might be seeing with the color choices, having the song to confirm is perfect. I’ve only had a few times where the bird could not be confirmed because it was after the general migration period and some snow birds were still in the area. I wish that you would add a section for this, as I like to confirm This is my bird! And although I do know what bird it is that I am seeing, I’d like the option to confirm that there are still birds in the area after their migratory pattern has passed. Other than this one tiny flaw, I love the app!! And I’ve used it for years. It’s the best app out there in my personal opinion!! Love love love my birds and this app!!
It’s ok
lilyrich09 on 2020-02-23
I enjoy watching and calling all the birds, but there some bad thing in this app. First of all, how are you supposed to get a good picture of a bird? That’s one way to get an Id of a bird. The other way is to explain where it was what it was doing ext. but 95 percent of the time, it’s wrong. Also, the birds songs and calls were recorded in like the fifty’s sixths and eightys. I’m not kidding. Now the birds have different sounds and my sounds on the app sound really different. I think to get an Id is to have a speaker so the app can hear the bird sound and identify it. And the calls seriously need an update. But other than that, it’s a pretty good app.
IndieDirk on 2020-02-23
First I want to say that I’ve used this app extensively and Love it! However, I got a new phone and re-downloaded it. Now the bird packs will not download.. I’ve tried everything I can think of from deleting the app and re downloading to logging out and trying via different paths and menus.. none seem to link back to the downloadable file. Really hoping this gets fixed as this is one of my top birding apps! If your reading this and are new to Merlin I encourage you to give them time to address this issue before you jump ship.. this is a powerful and highly useful app to birders of all levels! Thanks and fingers crossed for resolution -Indiedirk
An amazing app for all type of birders and wanna be birders
ravenii on 2020-02-23
I am a wanna be birder and more of a bird photographer. I have used the eBird site to learn about birds. But when I discovered an interest in birds, Merlin Bird ID became an invaluable tool as I only could recognize only a few, like crows, eagles , bluebirds and the like. I have been digiscoping to Id birds with the app and it was not the easiest. Then I discovered that I could direct the app at high resolution images on my displays. Since then I have pushed “that is my bird” numerous times. Thank you to all the great souls involved in the eBird venture. Eternally great full for the knowledge shared.
Love this app, possibly my favorite!
Skippy1Trip on 2020-02-23
My favorite birding book is getting dusty, because this app is awesome. It’s a wonderful tool for identifying birds, and with every identification you are sending valuable information to Cornell. Beautiful pictures of birds at different stages of life, maps and a variety of bird calls. I recommend this app to friends more than any other app on my phone. I would like to see more Cornell identification apps, butterflies, spiders , insects and/or reptiles would really be awesome. I have the Audubon guide books and love them, but I would enthusiastically welcome more Cornell apps! Thank you
Explore birds gives me a blank list and only the search function
greenkikocat on 2020-02-23
Merlin used to be great. I could scroll through all the bird categories and learn something about birds I was not familiar with. Now, I have to search for a bird I already know and I see only that bird’s information. This diminishes the usefulness of the app for me. I want to use Merlin as I would a bird guide as well as an identifier for birds I see. I am so disappointed that I am considering uninstalling the app. I wanted to use it for the Great Backyard Bird Count this year but if I can’t compare bird descriptions I will look elsewhere for a better tool. I am so disappointed.

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