iBird Pro, our most popular app, which covers all species of North America, now contains databases for other countries, including the UK and Hawaii, as well as several new features, such as Photo Sleuth.
Besides the fact that iBird was the first birding app for the iPhone (released in 2008), it offers a combination of luxury features that set it apart from all birding apps in the iTunes app store. For example, only iBird offers both illustrations and photographs for every species. Of course, the beauty of drawings is that the illustrator can emphasize the important identification markings of the bird family, something photographs can’t do. For this very reason, iBird offers over 1,000 composite illustrations. Photographs, on the other hand, let you see how the species appears in real life. So, to optimize your experience, iBird includes both drawings and multiple photos for each species of bird -- usually of the male, female, juvenile and subspecies, assuming they are available and meaningful.
Also unique to iBird, every one of the 946 species accounts contain a detailed field marks layer for each illustration. The layer can be turned on or off to highlight important identification characteristics. Every illustration in iBird is a high-resolution composite HDR drawing of the species in its natural environment. Additionally, iBird contains over 4,000 bird song and call vocalizations.
But iBird's best feature has to be its comprehensive birding search engine that can turn anyone into an expert birder. It comes with over 35 characteristics that can be searched (such as body color, location, bill shape, etc.). There is also an AI-based photo recognition feature -- iBird Photo Sleuth -- available as a low-cost in-app purchase. Photo Sleuth can identify a bird from any photograph, even poor photos taken with your smartphone or tablet. You can watch a short slide show of how Sleuth works here: bit.ly/ibirdsleuth. A stand-alone version of Photo Sleuth is also available in the app store.
No internet connection is required to use iBird as it has a self-contained database of all content.
Also new to this iBird Pro version are the 2018 American Ornithological Union updates, including new splits, changes to common names, families, orders, etc. We’ve updated 37 high-resolution species illustrations, that, as you know, are one thing that sets iBird apart from all other birding apps, which only offer photographs. See What's New for more details.
The iBird Pro architecture is now “consolidated”, meaning its default North America database is supplemented with databases of other countries, including the United Kingdom and Ireland, Hawaii and Palau. You can purchase databases for these countries and instantly switch between them inside the app. The beauty is that you no longer need multiple apps -- a single version of iBird Pro can now serve as a reference guide to birds around the world. Furthermore, you can install iBird Pro on multiple devices and share it with your family plan so that, with one app, everyone can enjoy thousands of new species of regions around the world.
iBird Pro offers these fantastic in-app purchase features: Birds Around Me (BAM)—shows just those species within a radius surrounding your GPS location Percevia™ smart search—a patented feature that helps you identify birds just like the birding experts, Time-of-Day—lets you search for birds by activity levels during day or night (Cathemeral), dawn and dusk (Crepuscular), etc., and Owls of Mexico and Central America—which includes illustrations with field marks, range maps, songs and calls and much more for these remarkable species. There are also discounted bundles of all these features available.
Version 12.01 adds 69 new illustrations—to see these go to Search->Illustration Update-12.0 and 12.1.
More Details of iBird Pro Version 12.01: http://ibird.com/whats-new/whats-new.html
In addition to compatibility with the newest iPhones and iPads, this expanded version of iBird is completely updated for the 2018 American Ornithological Union (AOU) Supplement. There are two new species; the Cassia Crossbill and the Sinaloa Wren. The Thayer’s Gull has been lumped as a subspecies of the Iceland Gull. Plus, there are over 100 small changes, some of which are listed below.
In our continuing effort to improve our illustrations and photos we have updated the following 32 species drawings with much improved composite illustrations: Ashy Storm-Petrel, Band-rumped Storm-Petrel, Bermuda Petrel, Black Storm-Petrel, Broad-billed Hummingbird, Broad-tailed Hummingbird, Bronzed Cowbird, Cassia Crossbill, Couch's Kingbird, Crescent-chested Warbler, Eskimo Curlew, Eurasian Coot, Glaucous Gull, Glaucous-winged Gull, Golden-winged Warbler, Gray-crowned Yellowthroat, Hairy Woodpecker, Harlequin Duck, Iceland Gull, Killdeer, Long-billed Dowitcher, Northern Waterthrush, Painted Redstart, Rufous-capped Warbler, Say's Phoebe, Sinaloa Wren, Slate-throated Redstart, Smith's Longspur, Swainson's Warbler, White-headed Woodpecker, Willow Ptarmigan, Wrentit. You can see these in a matched list by selecting Search->Illustration Update->12.01.
2018 AOU updates
Gray Jay has been changed to Canada Jay, White-collared Seedeater has been split into Cinnamon-rumped Seedeater & Morelet's Seedeater, Harris’s Hawk Band code changed from HASH to HRSH, Fox Sparrow changed from Old World to New World Sparrow, Storm-Petrels are now grouped into Southern (Oceanitidae) and Northern (Hydrobatidae) Storm-Petrels, several parrots have been placed in African and New World Parrots from lories, Parakeets, Macaws and Parrots, Black-faced Grassquit, Saffron Finch and Yellow-faced Grassquit have been moved from Emberizids to Tanagers. Gray-streaked Flycatcher has been moved from Tyrant Flycatchers to Old World Flycatchers. Flame-colored Tanager, Hepatic Tanager, Scarlet Tanager, Summer Tanager and Western Tanager have been moved from Tanagers to Cardinals & Piranga Tanagers. Red-billled Leiothrix has been moved to Sylviid Warblers from Old World Babblers. Bananaquit has been moved from Bananaquits to Tanagers. Crimson-collared Grosbeak has been moved to Tanagers from Cardinals, Piranga Tanagers and Allies. In addition to the above changes, 16 birds had species name changes and 8 birds had changes to Latin names.
This plugin identifies birds of North America from any photo, even poor quality photos. Open photos in your Photo Gallery or use your device camera directly. Photo Sleuth allows beginners and advanced birder’s to ID species the stump the experts. The beauty of Sleuth is that it doesn’t need an internet connection. Go to the Purchases screen to find a short slide show about iBird Photo Sleuth.
Owls of Mexico
Includes Owls of Mexico, the first time we have extended the North America database to include new species. In this collection our favorite 16 Owls of Mexico and Central America are presented in all the high-quality detail iBird is known for, including illustrations with field marks, range maps, songs and calls, photos, ID and behavior data and much more. Take a look at the graphical onboard tutorial on the Purchase page for a visual presentation of a typical species account for this package.
Time of Day Search
The new Time of Day search feature lets you filter birds by activity intervals during day or night (Cathemeral), dawn and dusk (Crepuscular), during the day (Diurnal) or during the night (Nocturnal). Time of Day Notes which provide additional information about a species behavior are found on each species from a new Time of Day menu. The Time of Day feature is particularly useful for birders who are interested in night birding.
Ratings and Reviews
New rating after developer explained issues
I’ve left my original review below for context. There were two things going on that relate more to Apple than iBird. First, in-app purchase are not part of family sharing. Thus, you have to repurchase on different devices. Second, any device using a family shared app but not using the purchaser’s Apple ID has to purchase the original app and the in-app items on its own. Thus, family sharing only works for the original app. In effect, it provides marketing for the developer to extend its sales.
To the substance of iBird Pro. It’s the best birding app available. Buy it and put up with the App Store hoops.
I had to buy in-app purchases a second time for my iPad after buying them for my iPhone. None of the in-app purchases are recognized on my wife’s iPhone and restoring purchases fails. Instead the app says she has to purchase the original iBird Pro on her phone (i.e., not really family shared)so she can purchase the in-app items — Again! The developer has not responded to my support email or to my post n the support forum. Neither did they respond to my original review. I appreciate the need to make money and how offering in-app purchases for enhancements to components that were once standard or for new components is a way to increase revenue but they need to be honest about family sharing and in-app purchases. It’s a good app and one I’ve used for years but the new version is buyer beware.
Developer Response ,
The family sharing of in-app purchases is not something we control--its based on Apple's policy which is explained in detail here: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT203046. In part it says:
What you can't share
-Individual or student Apple Music subscriptions and other subscriptions.
-Items that are no longer available on the App Store and iTunes Store.
Great encyclopedia. Pay attention to descriptions.
We finally noted that some of the raven sounds are from other (faraway) parts of the country, and we recall, ravens are wise old birds. Not always their language. Sometimes they react in silence, as if to say, “What?”
Also remember to read the description: if the call is one of birds in fear or alarm, you may well note that nearby birds start flying away in fear or alarm.
I note the app is of late getting updates describing IAPs with fancy-schmancy new features. I hope this does not portend an overall IAP for a new version of the app (rendering this current version obsolete). Already, instead of the available Bird Sleuth IAP, we use Merlin. I’d be sorrowful to see the end of iBird Pro due to built-in obsolescence.
Not having problems, plus an interesting story
We really like iBird Pro and have not had any problems with version 11.0 on iPhone 8 or iPad Air 2. The illustrations with field marks and photos help a lot with identifications. The bird sounds are also very helpful. My wife and I have enjoyed using it for several years, especially last spring when a Cooper's Hawk built a nest and raised a family in our neighbor's tree. A few months after the hawk family had moved on, my wife was in a nearby town doing some shopping. She came out of a store to find a large crowd gathered around her car. Thinking somebody had hit her car, she started walking toward the car until somebody warned her not to get too close. On top of the car was a Cooper's Hawk with a dead rabbit. Whenever anybody tried to 'shoo' it away the bird threatened them with loud calls and thrashing wings. My wife took out her phone, launched iBird Pro, turned the volume up loud and played the Cooper's Hawk alarm call. The hawk on the car looked surprised and puzzled, looked around for another bird, then took off carrying it's prey. Everybody was astonished and my wife was pleased and proud of her quick thinking. One of the women in the crowd asked loudly, "What app is that? I want to buy it!" You probably got several new iBird Pro customers as a result.
- Mitch Waite Group
- 2.2 GB
Requires iOS 11.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.
- Age Rating
- © Mitch Waite Group
- In-App Purchases
- Birds Around Me $2.99
- Percevia Smart Search $2.99
- Percevia and BAM Bundle $4.99
With Family Sharing set up, up to six family members can use this app.