We designed eBird Mobile to be the fastest and smoothest data entry method in eBird. Besides rapid-start checklists, eBird Mobile has more features that will speed things along for you. Here are some tips and tricks to get the most convenient experience with eBird Mobile:
The Quick Entry system on eBird Mobile lets you enter lots of species and lots of numbers with relatively little effort and great speed. Type the number of a species that you saw + the species name or its Quick Find code. From there just tap the name of the species to automatically add the number you typed to the count for that species.
If you see a group of Herring Gulls while eBirding, type "10 herr", and the list will filter to just the Herring Gulls. You can also type "1 herg" for the same result.
Tap on the species name when it appears, and it will add 10 Herring Gulls to that total. If you see 30 more Herring Gulls later, then you can type "30 herg.” When you tap on the name "Herring Gull", the total will update to 40.
You can also subtract using quick entry. If you have 5 Common Mergansers, you can reduce the count to 3 by just typing "-2 come" in the quick entry.
Quick Find Codes
Quick Find Codes are a simple set of rules to get a quick four-letter code for any bird in the world. These are similar to Banding Codes (which also work in eBird), but our codes simplify cases where there’s a conflict between similarly named species. Quick Find Codes work across all species searches in eBird but help most on eBird Mobile. Here are the rules:
One-word bird names: The code is the first four letters of the bird name.
Examples: Gadwall = GADW; Willet = WILL.
Two-word bird names: Use the first two letters of the first word and the first two letters of the second word. Common Tern thus becomes COTE. Examples: Spotted Redshank = SPRE; House Sparrow = HOSP.
Three-word bird names: Use the first letter of the first two words and the first two letters of the last word. South Polar Skua becomes SPSK, and Long-tailed Jaeger becomes LTJA. Examples: Red-winged Blackbird = RWBL; Fernando Po Batis = FPBA.
Four to six-word bird names: Just use the first letter of each word. Treat hyphens and spaces equally. Thus Black-throated Green Warbler (BTGW), White-winged Black-Tyrant (WWBT), and Von der Decken’s Hornbill (VDDH) are all constructed similarly despite the different hyphenation. If the name is longer than four words just enter the first four. Examples: Black-throated Magpie-Jay = BTMJ; Black-bellied Storm-Petrel = BBSP; Black-and-white Casqued Hornbill = BAWC.
Alternate Common Names: all English common name translations are indexed as Quick Find codes, so RLHA works for Rough-legged Hawk and RLBU works for Rough-legged Buzzard, depending on whether your common name preference is set to English (US) or English (UK), respectively. We don’t yet have Quick Find Codes available for non-English translations in eBird.
Scientific Names: Quick Find codes also work for scientific names, so “TUMI” works for Turdus migratorius (American Robin) and “BULA” works for Buteo lagopus (Rough-legged Hawk).
Smart Sort organizes the species list by how often species are reported on complete checklists within a given area, making it easier to work through a short list of common species. Species that are infrequent (6%> and >0%) and unrecorded (0%) are designated with an orange half-circle and a red circle, respectively.
Smart Sort works by checking if there are at least 25 complete checklists for your 20x20 km grid for the current 3-week period (i.e., this week, the week before, and the week after, like eBird bar charts). If there aren’t 25 complete checklists, Smart Sort tries again at 60x60 km, then at 100x100km resolution; if there aren’t enough checklists, it falls back to the regional filter. This way Smart Sort gives finer scale information in dense data areas and spatially relevant results even when the data are sparse.
Note: 1) Frequencies are stored at the species level, so subspecies use the parent species’ frequency, 2) Non-species taxa are listed in the unreported group, and 3) A well-twitched rarity may appear more frequent than it really is; this will resolve over time as more checklists are collected.
Share checklists from eBird Mobile
You can share eBird your checklists with birding party from your mobile device. Increase the number of observers to open the “Share checklist with…” option, type their username(s) into that display, and submit the list to share it automatically! More info here.