Tip of the Month: Using Smart Search

Application Tip of the Month

Using Smart Search

smartsearch
Whether you’re looking for dragonflies or birds, BirdsEye Nature Apps are the best apps to learn what’s being seen nearby. BirdsEye and Dragonfly ID are also great in helping you identify what you are actually seeing.  Not only do they help you narrow down the possibilities by what other have reported, each app comes with Smart Search. Smart Search is a collection of intelligent filters that allow you to choose color, size, and habitat to narrow down the possible species.  As soon as you start entering information about what you are seeing the list changes and sorts the species by how good of a match you have chosen.

So, if you haven’t had a chance to give Smart Search a try we think you’ll really like it.  It’s especially helpful when you’re away from your home turf, or when you are just starting out as a budding birder or dragonflyer. Smart Search is included in both BirdsEye (Android and iOS) and Dragonfly ID.

You can access Smart Search from the main menu, or under Nearby Birds or when searching a specific location (iOS only).  Just look for the icon that looks like a magnifying glass with a ‘plus’ sign.

 

 

Tip of the month: Using the Filter Settings

BirdsEye is the best app to see what birds are being seen around you. Make sure to check in regularly with BirdsEye to see what’s being seen near your regular hotspots, or explore distant areas to plan birding stops on your next outing, vacation or business trip.

The two main views for checking on sightings are the maps view and the abundance charts.

Maps

This view is straight forward and provides all sightings of a species with eBird reports from the past 30 days. You can zoom and pan the maps to search a broader area or for a more close up view.

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Abundance Charts

Abundance Charts provide bar graphs that show how frequently a species is reported based on the Filter settings for that location. Only those species within the time and distance settings are shown in the list.

 

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How to customize the lists

Filters allow you to customize the search by proximity to your location and how recently the sightings were made. You can change the search distance, miles or kilometers, and the timeframe. Focus in on just the birds that have been reported a single park,  or all sightings within 50 miles or kilometers. Tap the filter icon in the top right of the BirdsEye screen to make the adjustments. This is perhaps the most powerful feature of BirdsEye.

By working with the filter options you can adjust the view for your current location, any hotspot or one of your designated ‘Favorites’

Here’s how to adjust the filter settings in ‘Nearby Birds’, but the same instructions also work when looking at a specific hotspot in the ‘Browse by Location’ or ‘Favorite Locations’ sections of BirdsEye:

  1. Under ‘Nearby Birds’ tap the funnel icon in the upper right of the screen.
  2. Drag the ‘Distance to search’ slider to the appropriate range you want to view.
  3. Select the ‘Search Timeframe’ for the sightings.
  • when the ‘Recent Weeks’ option is selected you’ll get another slider that you can adjust for any sightings within the past 1-4 weeks
  • the ‘Current Month’ (iOS member feature) tab provides a view of all birds reported over the past 9 years or so. This option is especially useful when you are birding in a location that doesn’t have a lot of recent eBird reports.
  • the ‘Select Months’ (iOS member feature) view also shows sightings for the past 9 years, but only for the specific months you select.  Tap the month(s) to select the ones you want sightings for.  A green checkmark will show to the right for each month selected.  You can select as many months as you want the data for. Perfect for planning trips!

4. Once you’ve adjusted the filters to your liking, tap on ‘Save’ in the upper right of your BirdsEye screen.

5. The species list is now filtered according to your date and range settings, and each chart shows the birds abundance based not the same choices. You will see your current filter settings summarized in the blue bar on the bottom of the screen.  These settings are maintained until the next time you make adjustments to them.

PRO TIP – When you are traveling to areas with few eBird reports, change the distance in the filter settings to 50 miles. This will combine the sightings for a larger area and give you a better idea of the birdlife in the general area.

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Tips and Tricks: Christmas Bird Counts

Audubon Christmas Bird Counts

Get ready for the Christmas Bird Count! Did you know that BirdsEye iOS shows you Christmas Bird Count circles all around the globe?  (BirdsEye for Android displays CBC center points, but not circles yet.)

This is a great way to check the exact location of the CBC boundary while you are in the field.

Using latitude and longitude data from each CBC circle, BirdsEye iOS also shows the exact boundaries for each count. This is great for when you are actually out in the field and want to know how far you can go and still count the birds.

Publicly-available data about CBC circles is not always accurate, so if your favorite CBC circle isn’t showing up in the right location, please send us the correct lat/lng and we will fix it. Just email us at support@getbirdseye.com.