Merlin Bird ID by Cornell Lab

65.2K reviews
Content rating
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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

63.8K reviews
S Lewis
February 23, 2024
Best birding app ever!!! I can sit out on my porch and just record the sounds. In my first day it identified 10 birds. I can't wait to use this in different parts of the state and country to see what I can hear and see. I also love that is it citizen science and the data is collected for analysis! 10/10 recommend for hardcore birders and novices alike!
8 people found this review helpful
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robert fuller
January 10, 2024
The identification is better than I thought. Now I can have a list of all the birds I've ever seen! Hopefully, more great updates are coming in the future! Update: as I've been getting deeper into birding using this app, I discovered a problem. I can't import audio files, and since there isn't a share button, I can't send the audio file to myself! I really hope that this bug will be fixed. Great birding app, though.
47 people found this review helpful
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Adam Lance
February 5, 2024
This app is basically useless now. I can hear birds plain as day, my mic works great, and I can even hear the birds very clearly when I play back the recording that the app made, but I almost never get any information about which bird made the sound. Every time it happens, I ensure I have full internet access and still, nothing. It's a huge bummer. It used to work great.
16 people found this review helpful
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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.