About Tim Rowland

Tim Rowland is a columnist, author and outdoors writer living in Jay.

Reader Interactions


  1. E says

    Bummed you had a bad experience with Merlin. I hope others are still willing to try after reading this negative article. My friends and I have found it to be a fantastic resource – and the sound ID has been spot on. First, make sure the app is updated (go to the app store). Then, if you are going out of cellphone range you turn it on once so it knows your general area (the ADK). Not having the location info might have been why you got odd IDs.

    Merlin will highlight the birds it thinks are the most likely for the sound signature, and your area. Go through the “Details” to listen to the pre-recorded calls, and see if it matches what you hear. Once you find a match select “That’s My Bird!” and add it to your life list. I hardly have a bad ID – it has correctly identified numerous warblers, thrushes, etc.

    Consider reading the website, or watching a youtube tutorial if it proves tricky. I’d hate for folks to overlook this cool app that has added a new layer to birding!

  2. AdirondackAl says

    I leave the Merlin sound ID running while enjoying my morning coffee on the porch. It identifies all the birds sounds from our woods. It’s free, fun and informative.

  3. Ginny Alfano says

    I love the Merlin app. I sit out on my deck and use it to pick up all the birds that are singing in my hedgerows. I can ID most birds by sight, but not by song unless it’s a very familiar one like a Chickadee. Forget Warblers. I can never ID them. Merlin does a great job picking them up. It’s amazingly accurate!

  4. Kip Thompson says

    Tim Roland is the best. While reading him you almost always learn something, but the real treat is his droll, tongue firmly planted in cheek humor. This one is just a quick sampler. Read on.

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