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iPhone application keeps a bird in the hand

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Call it the best invention for birding since binoculars: BirdsEye, a new birding app for iPhone® and iPod touch®.

“It’s like having thousands of local birding experts in your pocket,” said Kenn Kaufman, birder, author of the Kaufman Field Guide to Birds of North America and team member of Birds in the Hand, LLC, of Virginia, a partnership that created the new application.

The app brings together content from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, the Academy of Natural Sciences and Kaufman; and is now available on the iPhone® App Store.

If you’re in search of a particular bird, BirdsEye will show you where it has been observed, and even give you directions.

The app also provides maps of birding hotspots for any location in North America (the contiguous 48 states, Canada and Alaska), and supplies images and audio for the 470 most frequently observed birds in North America, along with additional information for hundreds of other birds. Bird sounds come from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s Macaulay Library archive, the largest collection of bird and animal sounds in the world.

BirdsEye also provides real-time access to bird observations submitted to eBird, a joint project of the Cornell Lab and Audubon, which receives 1.5 million to 2 million bird observation reports each month from birders all over North America.

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