Merlin Bird ID by Cornell Lab

70.8K reviews
Content rating
Screenshot image
Screenshot image
Screenshot image
Screenshot image
Screenshot image
Screenshot image
Screenshot image

About this app

What's that bird? Ask Merlin—the world’s leading app for birds. Just like magic, Merlin Bird ID will help you solve the mystery.

Merlin Bird ID helps you identify birds you see and hear. Merlin is unlike any other bird app—it's powered by eBird, the world’s largest database of bird sightings, sounds, and photos.

Merlin offers four fun ways to identify birds. Answer a few simple questions, upload a photo, record a singing bird, or explore birds in a region.

Whether you’re curious about a bird you’ve seen once or you’re hoping to identify every bird you can find, the answers are waiting for you with this free app from the renowned Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

• Expert ID tips, range maps, photos, and sounds help you learn about the birds you spot and build birding skills.
• Customized lists of birds to find where you live or travel
• Merlin was created by bird experts for everyone.
• Merlin is global—look up any bird at any location.
• Keep track of your sightings—linked to eBird, a global database of more than 1 billion bird observations!

• Powered by Visipedia, Merlin Sound ID and Photo ID uses deep learning to identify birds in photos and sounds. Merlin learns to recognize bird species based on training sets of millions of photos and sounds collected by birders at, archived in the Macaulay Library at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.
• Merlin delivers the most accurate results thanks to experienced birders, who curate and annotate sightings, photos, and sounds, who are the true magic behind Merlin.

• Choose bird packs that contain photos, songs, and calls, and identification help for anywhere in the world, including Mexico, Costa Rica, South America, Europe, Africa, the Middle East, India, Australia, Korea, Japan, China, and more.
• It’s available in your language. Merlin is available in English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, Hebrew, German, Japanese, Korean, Turkish, Simplified Chinese, and Traditional Chinese.

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s goal is to help you and millions of others to learn about birds. Our nonprofit mission to improve the understanding and protection of birds and nature is made possible by the generosity of Cornell Lab members, supporters, and citizen-science contributors.
Updated on
Dec 27, 2023

Data safety

Safety starts with understanding how developers collect and share your data. Data privacy and security practices may vary based on your use, region, and age. The developer provided this information and may update it over time.
No data shared with third parties
Learn more about how developers declare sharing
This app may collect these data types
Personal info, App activity and 2 others
Data is encrypted in transit
You can request that data be deleted

Ratings and reviews

69.4K reviews
Freyda Black
April 12, 2024
Absolutely fantastic, easy to use, intuitive,and accurate beyond my expectations. In addition to identifying species in real time, it highlights species matches on replay, links to species descriptions and additional songs and calls as well as photos and videos. I am finally learning to identify the mystery birds in my life! The BEST app for birding!!! Only one feature that doesn't work for me, the answer 5 questions, even when I know the bird in advance.🤷
3 people found this review helpful
Did you find this helpful?
John Yacc
April 10, 2024
The app is impressive for what it does but there are a couple of issues that need addressing: This is super important if any developers are looking, the Cancel button NEEDS to have a popup prompt "are you sure Yes/No". As it is, it is way too easy to accidentally abort a recording when you're trying to save it. Would also like the ability to be able to categorize or label recordings so I can group them. Lastly, a way to export the list in plain text with metadata. Include timestamps too?
2 people found this review helpful
Did you find this helpful?
Aaron Baker
March 28, 2024
Love this app, one of my favorites! Currently, the app crashes whenever I try to open any previous recordings that are longer than ~20 minutes. I assume that it's struggling to load such a long audio file but I almost never want to listen to the audio, I just want the list of birds. Would be nice if opening past recordings initially just produced a simple list, with the option to manually load audio when needed to avoid such strain, if that's the problem. Back to 5 stars when fixed.
27 people found this review helpful
Did you find this helpful?

What's new

Updated Sound ID Model (v34): Merlin can now identify over 1200 species by sound! We added over 150 new species to sound ID in this update, including fan-favorites like Wilson’s Plover, Flame-colored Tanager, and New Zealand Fantail.
New Languages: Merlin is now available in Thai and Danish!
Bug Fixes: We’re working to make the Merlin experience smoother, and added fixes for a few pesky bugs related to location services and the Life List page.