WWF Wildlife Mobile has teamed up with well-known conservationist and author of ‘Fighting for Birds’ Dr Mark Avery to bring you the top 10 wildlife apps for your smartphone: As you enjoy the wildlife with the help of your smartphone app, you’ll also be contributing to nature conservation – and it won’t cost you a penny.
1. Birdguides Butterflies of Britain and Ireland. (iPhone) 17$.
This app provides drawings and photographs of all the butterflies you might see – from eggs and caterpillars to the adults. If the sexes differ they are both shown and underwing and upperwing are illustrated. Distribution maps and charts of when the species are on the wing is added to the information. Easy to use in the field and an invaluable aid for experts and beginners. (recommended by Dr Mark Avery)
2. Project Noah (iPhone and Android) Free.
The Project Noah aims to harness the power of citizen scientists everywhere! It allows you to identify wildlife you’ve seen, upload your nature spots to the wildlife map, and view what other people have seen in your local area. Plus, you can use it to take part in missions from photography competitions to recording butterflies and moths. (recommended by WWF Wildlife Mobile)
3. Birdtrack (iPhone and Android) Free.
This app is for the keen birder who wants to keep a record of his or her sightings and compare sightings between sites or on different dates. It will tell you how many species you’ve seen in the year too (if you really want to know). But the data are also shared with the British Trust for Ornithology, RSPB etc. so that your sightings help make up a national picture of, for example, when the cuckoo arrives each year. The app cuts out the need for a notebook and then sitting down at a computer at a later date – you can enter your sightings as you go. (recommended by Dr Mark Avery)
4. Wild Mushrooms of North America and Europe by Roger Phillips (iPhone) 2.55$
This app has over 1550 mushrooms listed and works without an Internet connection. It features a comprehensive series of 2,400 photographs illustrating wild mushrooms and other fungi; from edible to hallucinogenic and poisonous. The detailed photographs show each mushroom from different angles and there’s lots of information to help with identification; descriptive keys, details of size, shape colour and habitat. There is also a symbol on each picture to quickly give you the idea of danger or edibility. (recommended by WWF Wildlife Mobile)
5. Birdguides Bird News Anywhere (iPhone) 67$ per annum.
Now you can sit in a meeting at work and see what birds have been seen back at home or what is just down the road – how frustrating! This app brings up to date information on rare or unusual bird sightings to your phone with details of where they were seen and how to find them at the site. Not cheap – but good. (recommended by Dr Mark Avery)
6. Birdguides Dragonflies & Damselflies of Britain and Ireland (iPhone) 17$
This does for dragonflies what the Birdguides butterfly app does for butterflies. Great to take into the field, easy to use and a real help. (recommended by Dr Mark Avery)
7. Collins British Wildlife Photoguide (iPhone) 11.83$
The Collins British Wildlife Photoguide is an interactive version of the popular Collins Complete British Wildlife Photoguide. It’s easy to use and features more than 1500 species with photo images and text descriptions. It covers the species most likely to be encountered plus a few unusual ones that are striking and therefore likely to attract attention. (recommended by WWF Wildlife Mobile)
8. iBats (iPhone and Android) Free.
This is for the specialist bat surveyor. This app connects to your bat detector, downloads the high-pitched calls of bats (which may even fly past unseen) and then identifies the bats and puts the records into a database. (recommended by Dr Mark Avery)
9. TreeId (iPhone) 4.21$
TreeId is a useful field guide to identifying trees found growing in the open countryside and natural woodlands of the British Isles. All native and naturalise tree species in the British Isles are covered. Find tree details and identification forms, and if you’re stuck you can answer a short series of questions about the tree, that will help the app identify the species for you, with an estimated percentage likelihood that the tree suggested is correct. Clicking on a tree in the list displays details about the tree. (recommended by WWF Wildlife Mobile)