Updated: July 12, 2015.

Home Page

The Raven Archives

Regional Birding Information

Birding Events

2014 Alaska Bird Conference

Contact us



Local Bird Checklists for Alaska



Alaska Birding Resources


Alaska Department of Fish and Game Birding Program


Birds in a Digital World

A List of Apps and Internet Resource

for the Modern Bird Enthusiast

(Download/Print this Information

Tri-fold Brochure - print in landscape format)



Merlin Bird ID

An incredibly easy-to-use app designed for beginners. Takes you step-by-step through the process of identifying the bird you are looking at, and gives you results specific to your geographic location and time of year! Developed by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

Price: Free!

 Available for: iOS (Apple) and Android


The Sibley eGuide to the Birds of North America

The digital version of one of the gold standards of print field guides. Outstanding illustrations covering virtually all plumage variations, combined with many sound recordings and the ability to compare two species side-by-side make Sibley’s a favorite in the app world as well.  

Price: $19.99

Available for: iOS (Apple) and Android


  iBird Pro, iBird Plus, and iBird Yard+

This suite of digital guides offers identification, behavior, habitat and ecology information, hand-drawn illustrations, professional photographs, range maps, and playable songs and calls. Pro and Plus cover Hawaii as well as North America! Go to for a full comparison of their guides.

 Price: $2.99- $19.99

Available for: iOS  (Apple) and Android


National Geographic Birds

This app is currently the most comprehensive identification guide available, covering 995 species, including many that are very rare in North America. It also includes fun quizzes, a tool kit, news, and space for your own lists and bird sighting journal. Find more information at

Price: $9.99

Available for: iOS (Apple)


Peterson Birds – A Field Guide to Birds of North America

Though many find this app more challenging to navigate, it has plenty of extra information to make the effort worthwhile. It offers illustrations, songs, range maps, and nest photos for over 800 species, in addition to the ability to keep track of your sightings and look up other local sightings from eBird (see eBird in “Websites” section). Find more information at

Price: $14.99

Available for: iOS (Apple)


BirdLog North America

This app from BirdsEye Apps has no bird identification information, but is an easy way to record species while you are out in the field or just don’t have a paper and pencil handy. Integrated with the website eBird (see entry in Websites), the app helps you keep track of the species and numbers of birds you’re seeing, and many other things. You can then upload your checklists to eBird straight from your phone! For more great birding apps from BirdsEye, check out

Price: $9.99

Available for: iOS (Apple) and Android



This app series has no visual ID information, but is an “encyclopedia of bird songs.” It offers more song and call recordings per species than any of these other apps, and it includes which state/province each recording was made, so it is very helpful for learning the amount of variation present in the sounds of a certain species. The three apps they offer differ only on the number of species covered (24-674). See for more information.

Price/s: Free -- $9.99

Available for: iOS (Apple)




All About Birds

Hosted by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, this site offers a wealth of knowledge about North American birds. It features a page for each species, covering details like life history, range maps, keys of identification, and much more!

Web address: 



A trove of world-wide bird sightings mapped out using Google Earth, this expansive resource shows citizen science at its finest. Any person can access reports of virtually any species from an hour ago to fifty years ago. An easy way to peruse recent local sightings, it also shows bar charts of when you’re likely to see a given species in your area. You can also use it to keep track of your own sightings!

Web address:


Macaulay Library and Xeno-Canto

These two websites host a vast compendium of bird sound recordings. The Macaulay Library has many more recordings, including those of other animals, but Xeno-Canto often has more information about the recordings. Both show each location and date, and that can be very useful since many birds sound different up here in Alaska than they do farther south.

Web addresses:


The Birds of North America

This site, hosted by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the American Ornithologists’ Union, is probably the most comprehensive online resource for information about the birds that breed in North America. Biologists and ornithologists regularly update these scientific pages as they perform field research, making their fascinating discoveries accessible to those outside the scientific community. Though there is a subscription fee ($45 per year or $5 for 30 days), they do have a few free trial species so you can sample the depth of the material you would have access to.

Web address:



Originally developed to aid participants in the Breeding Bird Survey, this interactive website is now available to help anyone improve their skills at identifying birds by sight or by sound. The site includes many songs and photos of birds from throughout the Western Hemisphere, but you can easily narrow the scope of your study by location. The main unique feature of this site is the quizzes, where you can test and hone your identification skills by songs and calls, sight, or both! Registration is required but free.

Web address:


American Birding Association

When you find that your interest in finding birds is becoming more of an obsession than you would like to admit, the ABA may be the place for you. Their publications, web resources, and events have much to offer anyone with an active interest in birding, whether you like to stay close to home, wander the globe, or a bit of both. Membership starts at $45 per year and includes a subscription to the bi-monthly magazine Birding, and the quarterly Birder’s Guide. For an extra fee, you can also receive the quarterly publication North American Birds, which documents the seasonal reports of rare birds across North America and identifies trends of species range expansions and contractions.

Web address:


Audubon Website

On the National Audubon website you will find a wealth of free information about birds, conservation, reports, and citizen science projects on a national scale. In addition, you will find links to many other websites relating to bird conservation programs and concerns.

Web address:


 Audubon Birds Pro App

The award-winning Audubon Birds is now Audubon Birds Pro, an outstanding mobile field guide resource completely updated to the current AOU checklist. Includes “Find Birds with eBird” powered by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology; 821 total species; advanced gallery view for easy comparison and search; field mark call outs; and NatureShare - a social community of birders who observe, identify, and share their observations and photos in the mobile app and online.

Price: $4.99

Available for: iOS (Apple) and Android


Audubon Guides Apps

Go to this website to discover all of the nature apps that Audubon has to offer! Not only do they have a bird guide, but they also offer identification apps for mammals, fish, reptiles and amphibians, butterflies, mushrooms, trees and wildflowers. Don’t miss out on their regional Ultimate Nature Series either!

Web address:


 Juneau Audubon Society

Visit our website to find out about all the events hosted by your local Audubon chapter—monthly adventure presentations in winter, weekly bird walks in spring, monthly Saturday Wild outdoor adventures during the summer, and cruises to Berners Bay! Become a member to receive our monthly newsletter, The Raven.

Web address:


*        *        *


From the "Red Poll" Arctic Audubon Society's newsletter

Alaska’s Internet Birding Resources by Dave Shaw, Arctic Audubon & Audubon Alaska Board

It probably won’t come as a surprise, but people aren’t using the telephone the way they used to. Five or ten years ago, I suspect most birders were getting their rare bird alerts and sightings over the phone, but that has changed. Arctic Audubon has decided that with the rise of internet birding resources, our Birding Hotline might not be needed. So, sadly, the Hotline may be discontinued.

For those of you that still use the Hotline and haven’t migrated over to the instant gratification of the internet, here is a guide to the best of Alaska’s internet birding resources.

1. eBird: This is a worldwide database of bird sightings. It is used by many thousands of birders across the globe. eBird is largely a citizen science initiative that uses bird sightings to generate a huge databases of lists. Sign up and explore local bird activity or lists from all over the planet:

2. Boreal Birder: This Yahoo list serve is the best resource for birders in Interior Alaska. Arctic Audubon’s Birding Hotline has been transcribed onto the site for some time. Check the list or sign up for the email alerts here:

3. Alaska Rare Bird Alert: Just as the title implies this site is about rarities. If you want to chase the Siberian Accentor in Seward or be ready the next time the White-winged Tern ends up at Fairbanks’ South Cushman Ponds, this is the place to look:

4. Alaska Birding: This is another statewide list worth following:

The following lists are useful if you live or are traveling in other parts of Alaska:

1. Eagle Chat: This list follows sightings in Southeast Alaska:

2. Beringia Birders: For the far western portion of Alaska:

3. Kachemak Bay Birders: Birding info for Homer and surroundings:

4. KPBirding: Bird sighting information for the Kenai Peninsula

5. Kenai Bird Festival: The webpage for this birding festival has a portion dedicated to current sightings on the Kenai:

6. Kodiak Birding: Sightings on Kodiak Island:


These sites should keep even the most enthusiastic Alaska birders busy for quite some time. If you discover more resources not listed, here, please let us know!

American Bird Conservancy

The Cats Indoors program invites YOU to check out our COMPLETELY REDESIGNED  web site.  The site now proudly displays quick links to important information such as our brochures; fact sheets, scientific literature, and other resources:

Outdoor Cats: Single Greatest Source of Human-Caused Mortality for Birds and Mammals: New Study

A new peer-reviewed study authored by scientists from two of the world’s leading science and wildlife organizations – the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) – has found that bird and mammal mortality caused by outdoor cats is much higher than has been widely reported, with annual bird mortality now estimated to be 1.4 to 3.7 billion and mammal mortality likely 6.9 – 20.7 billion individuals.

The study, which offers the most comprehensive analysis of information on the issue of outdoor cat predation, was published in the online research journal Nature Communications and is based on a review of more than 90 previous studies. The study was authored by Dr. Peter Marra and Scott Loss, research scientists at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute and by Tom Will from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Division of Migratory Birds. It is available at:


JAS Adopts Position Statement on

Dogs, Wildlife, and Wildlife Viewing

Click here to view statement



Free Audubon Guide to

North American Birds

The Audubon Online Guide to North American Birds is FREE to use on the homepage. This searchable online guide to North American Birds features 750 species of birds in 22 Orders and 74 families. The guide covers all of North America's breeding birds--approximately 580 species--as well as an additional 180 non-breeding species that visit the U.S. and Canada.

To take advantage of this great resource, click on the Audubon Online Bird Guide icon on

Beak Deformities in Alaska Birds


Scientists at the US Geological Survey Alaska Science Center are trying to track the geographic spread of an epizootic of beak deformities in wild birds that appears to have originated in Alaska.  


In 1999 and 2000, the USGS conducted a Christmas Bird Count survey of feeder-watchers and found that the beak deformities were clustered primarily around Anchorage and the Mat-Su Valley, going as far north as Trapper Creek and Talkeetna.  This epizootic appears to be spreading, since there are now regular reports of beak deformities from as far north as Fairbanks, throughout southeast Alaska, and as far south as the Puget Sound area in Washington state.  The USGS has now documented 30 different species in Alaska with overgrown or crossed beaks.  


To help with this effort, please do the following:

1) Look for birds with abnormal beaks. Note the species, where you see the bird, how it is behaving, and what the deformity looks like.


2)  IMPORTANT!  Please enter the details of your observations into our online reporting form (“Report a deformed or banded bird”): Click Here   Or, If you are not able to submit this information online, please contact Colleen Handel directly

You may also see Northwestern Crows with bands on their legs. Please record what the bands look like (Are they colored? In what order?) and if the bird has an abnormal beak. This information should be reported online or directly to Colleen Handel.

US Geological Survey Beak Deformity web site:  Click Here

Field Observation Report Form (web based):  Click Here  


Feeder-watch Report Form (web based):  Click Here or  Download Report Form


Contact Information:

Colleen M. Handel

USGS Alaska Science Center, 4210 University Dr., Anchorage, AK 99508

(907) 786-7181

Alaska Department of Fish and Game

Wings Over Alaska Program

Earn certificates for identifying 50, 125, 200, and 275 bird species in the state.




eBird 2.0, a project of The Cornell Lab of Ornithology and Audubon, is an updated version of the powerful Internet-based program currently used by thousands of birders. eBird is a free, user-friendly way for birders across North America to record, archive, and share their observations at any hour of the day. It is also an important tool for conservation, providing researchers with a comprehensive picture of the abundance and distribution of birds.

Alaska eBird

Alaska eBird is a great way to record your observations, manage your life list, and help contribute to avian monitoring and conservation in Alaska.  Visit the Alaska eBird website, which includes photos, interesting birding news and features, as well as observation records:

eBird newsletter 

New Publication from ebird:

If you eBird (count birds for fun), you can enjoy a new eBird newsletter, along with their thanks for contributing your bird observations to eBird. eBird wants to keep you posted about new and improved features for recording and exploring data; highlights from the eBird community; bird trends; and news of how scientists and conservationists are using your data. Check it out!

The mission of Juneau Audubon Society:

"To conserve the natural ecosystems of Southeast Alaska, focusing on birds, other wildlife and their habitats for the benefit and enjoyment of current and future generations"


The Raven


Copyright © 2002 - 2014 Juneau Audubon Society, Inc.

Send your comments or suggestions to: