Learn to Listen for Birds

The first step to learning more about birds is to be aware of them!  When outside, take time to stop and listen for them.

The free app called Merlin by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology will help you do this. After downloading the app on your phone, go outside and tap on the “Sound ID” button.  Then, at the bottom of the next screen, tap on the red (Apple) or green (Android) “record” button, hold your phone away from your body, and watch as names and photos of the birds singing or calling appear on the screen!

Learning to listen for birds takes practice! The human brain is programmed to ignore background noises and only cue in to sounds that are of particular interest. By using the the app Merlin you are training your brain that bird sounds are now of special interest to you, and you will start hearing them everywhere you go!

How to download and use Merlin (2nd half of video): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Xs7zi6HBjM
NOTE: You do not need a Cornell Lab Account to use your Merlin app. You can skip this section at the beginning of the video.