The iPhone is a wonderful gadget for birders, especially with some of the easy-to-use applications. The Peterson Field Guide to Warblers (available for iPod touch as well) is a basic yet quick source for one of the trickiest families of birds to master.
Open up the application and after the welcome screen, you are given just a few options.
- “Browse by Family” is not of much use since these are all wood-warblers (except the Olive Warbler).
- “Search Birds” leads into the meat of the program where you can search or scroll through the warblers in alphabetical order.
- “My Checklist” will show birds you’ve browsed and checked, giving you the opportunity to isolate certain birds you are trying to learn.
- And finally the “10-Question Quizzes” is a randomized series of questions that vary from sounds, images, and more to help you better learn the birds. (Note: you can do just sounds which is nice since that is a trickier area to learn at least for us.)
After finding a specific bird to look at you can quickly view several drawings from the newest Peterson Field Guide (where you are able to zoom in closer as well), select the range map of the species, view detailed information, and listen to their sound lightning quick. Here you can also check the bird to put in your checklist.
The Peterson Field Guide to Warblers application is not high-tech but does exactly what you want in a quick way.
From Wildtones – priced at $3.99
The Peterson Guide to Birds of Prey application has essentially the same features. The main differences are the “search by family” option is more beneficial as it breaks up the species by the several families covered. Each species has sound, range map, and extended information.
One major oddity is that “Nightjars” are included in this application. We are unaware of any birders that consider this group to be part of the “birds of prey”. (But hey, you get a bonus 8 species out of the deal 🙂
Also from Wildtones – priced at $2.99