Learn Bird Watching—Larkwire

4.8 (856)
45 MB
Age rating
Current version
Last update
12 months ago
Version OS
14.0 or later
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User Reviews for Learn Bird Watching—Larkwire

4.81 out of 5
856 Ratings
2 years ago, Birdcall2
A good tool for learning bird songs
First: the support for this app is excellent. I was unable to get the product to work at first. The developer worked with me over a period of days to resolve it. I had to uninstall and reinstall the app to get the purchase to load. I don’t know why that happened, but the support was patient and dedicated to solving my problem. I’ve used it a few times now and – now that I have the proper packet loaded – I am quite pleased with it. It’s not perfect, but is very, very good. And honestly, the tech support alone would be enough to make me recommend it. The product has good quality recordings and good photos. The game set up makes it a little more fun and rewarding to push through. The songs are grouped by quality of sound, allowing you to compare similar songs that can tricky to differentiate. This is one of the best aspects. If you’ve ever switched between taxa to compare the songs of a Chipping Sparrow and a Pine Warbler and later thought, “but wait! That’s a lot like the Dark-eyed Junco!” Then you know why this is helpful! It can get a little tedious and repetitive, but that does get the job done. I’ve only been using it for a few days now, but I’m leaning what I wanted to learn.
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4 years ago, Shopetastic
Makes every birding venture more enjoyable
I have struggled for a bit with bird song, and this app definitely helped more than I would’ve ever thought. I purchased it late one night as an impulse buy after seeing it recommend on a blog, and I absolutely love what it’s done for me and how different birding actually is when you can recognize calls. Even if all you learn is the most basic and common local birds calls, you have this entirely different element to birding, and you’ll notice more birds when you are out and about more than you ever did before. The app is easy to use, gives you two different game modes, tons of birds, progressively more difficult levels, and offers a written description of each birds call for those who paid words better with birds than they do just sounds on their own to a bird. There’s nothing more satisfying than confirming a bird based on call. Best thing I’ve ever bought on the App Store. Thanks to the developers for such a wonderful app.
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6 years ago, *IndigoPhoenix*
In the words of the Yellow Warbler, this app is sweet sweet sweet sweet so-so-so sweet!!! I don’t usually pay more than .99 cents for an app, but I took a chance on this one: and it turned out to be probably the best app purchase I’ve ever made! With the help of this app, I have made the plunge into birding by ear, and it has truly changed me from a casual birder to a serious one. I love that each bird has multiple recordings, which prevents me from memorizing a specific recording rather than the pattern of the song. I love that it is not intimidating to a beginner like me, but is also useful to the seasoned veteran. One feature which I would like to be added is a search bar in the section where you choose which birds to feature in your next game. Sometimes it’s difficult to find a specific species. I wish I could just type in “wrentit” rather than searching through every group and eventually finding it in “sparrows 6”.
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6 years ago, Superduperdo
Exactly what I was looking for!
I wanted to find a way to learn bird calls and songs that would work similarly to Dulingo. This app is exactly that, and will feel very familiar to anybody who has used Dulingo before. Learning bird songs is similar to learning a foreign language, and takes about the same amount of effort. This app lets me put in 10 minutes here, 20 minutes there, day after day, while saving my progress. After just a couple of weeks using this program, my birding has improved markedly, and walking in the woods is a whole different experience from before. The change is like the difference between traveling in a foreign city where you don’t speak any of the language, and being in one with a language you understand. I never knew how much I was missing out on by not knowing my bird calls until I started using this app. I cannot recommend Larkwire highly enough.
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5 years ago, Ohio paddler
The Best Way to Learn Bird Songs
I was really struggling to distinguish bird songs in my yard, and just listening to the bird songs on other apps didn’t seem to help. Larkwire allows you to start with very simple quizzes and work your way up. Learning bird songs is hard, and requires daily practice, but Larkwire makes it fun. It is very customizable, so you can create collections of specific birds. The first thing I did was create a group of the most common birds in my yard, then another of the most common birds at my favorite birding site. It’s starting to pay off. I am starting to recognize some songs—Cardinals, Robins, Red-Wing Blackbirds, Yellow Warblers, Common Yellow Throat, and several others now come to me easily. It’s great when I’m outdoors and I hear a birdsong or call and identify it, and know that the time I put in playing with this app is making a difference.
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3 years ago, c5nest
Sharpen Your Birding Ear
Every year I struggle with identifying uncommonly heard spring migrants. Many bird song apps are limited to common birds and aren’t much help if you are an intermediate (or above) birder. In addition to covering all the regional birdsongs (with several song variants for many species), this app allows you to specify playlists of species or groups. Being able to focus on “problem” songs has been enormously helpful to me. The only feature that the app lacks is the ability to display spectrograms. Visualizing sound with spectrograms can be especially useful in demonstrating differences in similar-sounding songs (and hopefully committing them to memory). Otherwise, this is a nearly perfect app for beginning to advanced birders wishing to improve their birding-by-ear skills. Highly recommended!
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3 years ago, jimmyfritz
Great tool
It takes years to develop birding by ear skills in the field. You have to be able to spot the bird while it’s vocalizing and most birds have multiple calls and songs. This app is a wonderful learning tool. You can allow the game to choose birds for you or you can set any particular bird or group of birds you want from one of their lists or make your own, or just sit and study by listening to the sounds while you see the bird. You can adjust the level of difficulty. I have tried apps which claim to ID bird sounds for you in the field using the mic on your phone. Sounds great but I haven’t found one which actually works reliably. You will have to put in the effort and Larkwire gives you a chance to do that and will give you a big “leg up” out there.
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5 months ago, andy5738201
Thank God a group of birders that are aware of the latest neuroscience developed this app! I have been using the app for less then a week and the results are incredible! After I read the book fluent forever about language acquisition, I had been wishing for the ability to apply it to bird language. I have no programming skills and was trying to us chat gpt to make something that would have been of far far inferior quality. The gross repetition of the gallery option helps you be able to differentiate and hear sounds that you have never heard before. The constant instant feed back of right or wrong next to similar sounding birds helps your brain differentiate the sounds. Then you use spaced repetition to help absorb the call deep into your memory. It works by playing you bird calls over spaced intervals right at about the time you would forget them. That time when you are about to forget, Neuroscientists have discoverd, is when your brain is most able to absorb the memory more deeply. I am so excited to walk outside in the spring and know who is singing!
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6 years ago, NikoGreenwood
Worth the price
I still use my free fields guide apps for when I see birds, but this app has absolutely changed my feeling of well being in the woods. It's like overhearing a conversation in a language you know while in a foreign country! The progression of difficulty makes it fun and easy to get started. Definitely check out the settings, too, as there may be a pack that's applicable to you that won't be turned in by default. You can start with song type or habitat type! You can customize playlists! It gives tips all along rather than a tutorial you'll never see again! This app is all good things, and funds go to both improving the app and conservation, it's a win win win!
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4 years ago, polkadotninja12345
This app has always been an incredible learning tool. It has helped me go from knowing a handful of backyard songs to being able to recognize most of the calls here in SW PA. In the past my only complaint would have been the dated user interface, but the recent update has addressed that well, and added something I always quietly wished for - the ability to read a song’s tips in the game where you guess the call without any choices. Thanks to the developer of this great app, it has really helped me achieve the goal of birdsong identification far faster (and probably better) than any other approach.
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2 years ago, Gabe__12
Great for learning bird songs!
Whenever I was hiking in the woods last spring and summer, I could always hear birds singing, but I couldn’t identify them by their song and it was hard to spot them amidst the foliage. I got the Eastern Landbirds Pack and started by practicing with small groups of Warblers in the Gallery practice mode, and then would practice in the Field mode with more and more birds as I recognized the songs better. Learning bird calls is tricky and takes a while, but this app definitely makes the process much easier! I highly recommend it!
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5 years ago, TessR92
Great to start, now just frustrating
If you are interested in just learning bird songs as a whole this is an AMAZING app! I love quizzing myself, and have recommended this to others in the past. Lately though I’ve just been super frustrated with their customized lists. I’m trying to brush up for field season where I collect breeding bird data and yet when I make a customized list of species that I know I will encounter, it only ever seems to quiz me on the same 8-10 species. Never any warblers, rarely what I need to work on, and no amount of adjusting playlists or settings seems to fix this. Considering the whole draw was the ability to tailor my study sessions I’m afraid I’ve been pretty let down, and for that reason only 3 stars.
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5 years ago, ruddy sherman
App might be a little too smart.
I love the concept. I’m still figuring out the sophisticated app, but it’s already upped my beginner/intermediate listening skills! But, when I put together a playlist the app automatically sorts the birds by song types so I apparently can’t play a game of just wrens, for example, or a list created from my last bird outing. I want to play a game with all of my listed birds, regardless of song type. Or a put together a list by local habitat. I’ve since discover the apps playlists based on a particular bird and I’m looking forward to that.
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2 years ago, diannedawn
This app is fantastic!
I can’t believe it has so few reviews. I thought it was great when it was just bird songs and now there are plumage courses too! The price is really not that much when you consider that it is a one time fee, not a subscription that is bilking you every month (like so many apps these days), and really is no more than you would shell out for a good field guide. Try the two free courses and I think you will agree that it is an awesome way to learn to identify birds by sight and sound.
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4 years ago, Briellla
I’ve learned so much already!
I’ve only been playing this game for a short while but already there have been so many times that I’ve noticed a bird outside that I’ve heard in the app. For example, the time I saw a new (to me) bright orange bird at the very top of a tree on a walk in my neighborhood and since I didn’t have binoculars thought I wouldn’t be able to identify it... until it started singing and I realized it was a Bullock’s Oriole...a bird I missed every time on Larkwire... but when I saw it and heard it, I was immediately able to identify it!
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5 years ago, Debshopin
Fantastic App but don’t use it outside
I purchased this app a couple of years ago but didn’t use its full functionality until this summer. I’ve progressed from a fledgling beginner to solid intermediate level. Along the way I’ve been able to identify the call and then find the birds a the National Wildlife refuge near my home. Word to the wise. I used the app one day while I was sitting outside. My husband observed that the tree near me became covered with birds. Best to use this app while inside.
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8 months ago, AlrightANickname
Voice with each Click?
I'd say I love this app -- though the price is a bit too high. Memorizing the bird song patterns is always hard to me. I'm wondering if we can add bird song in the Visual part of the courses -- I mean, like, when clicking an image in the field quiz, play the bird song. That would greatly help us memorize the songs while browsing though photos
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2 years ago, cathunter111
Great app but has glitches
Finally there’s an app to help me learn bird songs. I really like the way it groups the birds you are trying to learn and that it doesn’t try to make you learn too many at once. I appreciate also the descriptions of the sounds. But sometimes it’s playing but no sound comes out. I find if I shut down my phone entirely sometimes it comes back on properly. I hope this glitch gets fixed.
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9 months ago, cielobirder
A Hidden Gem to Learning Birdsong
Best app i have come across for learning to audibly identify birds. As a field biologist this app has been a game changer and is often what i recommend for anyone working point count jobs. The variety of learning styles is an added bonus that makes the app more approachable for a diverse set of learners as well as varying it up when one method gets old.
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5 years ago, King Eider
The best
Still the king of bird song learning apps. This becomes painfully obvious when practicing songs for areas outside USA and Canada. Finding my own recordings of decent quality, grouping them by similar sounding species, finding pictures, and getting it all into iTunes is doable but time consuming. This app is worth its price and more. Could we hope for coverage of other areas in the future?
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6 years ago, Dirtworm2
I don't know how I would learn bird calls without this
Sure, I can learn the common birds in my area just by being out in the field, but learning the uncommon birds and birds from other regions would be very difficult with any other app I have come across. This makes it a game, and intuitively reacts as I learn and as I fail. I am impressed with the intelligence programmed into this app.
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6 years ago, cooleo
Very Challenging teaching tool
Larkwire can be loads of fun when stuck on a commuter train. It is first rate presenting fun birdsong learning games. It is a bit much to really master all the less common calls of every species though. It might be better to focus on the more common songs especially for migrants in a given locale for several of the games. I know really dedicated birders that stopped using Larkwire due to frustration of how tough it is even at non expert level.
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7 years ago, Meowmox
Worth every penny.
I have been wanting to learn birdsong for years, but it can be really frustrating in the field. Since using this app I've managed to successfully identify a huge number of birds by sound alone. It's totally changed my experience of being outdoors for the better. Thank you for making this app!
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7 months ago, PA Birdnerd
To my knowledge the absolute best resource for learning bird calls. The most powerful tool is the ability to make your own playlists of similar calls. The program will than quiz you by playing them in random order.
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4 years ago, BonBon376
Makes learning bird songs fun
Love the set up which allows for systematic learning, the tips are also valuable to begin training to hear differences in song and field testing is the final challenge to simulate real life identification. I appreciate the thoughtful way this app was designed to optimize learning and have fun in the process!
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3 years ago, Asdfgfqwerty
Love this app but…
This is a very useful app and is really helping me to learn some bird songs quickly. I bought the core version and wish there was a way to upgrade to the full version without having to pay full price again. This is a design flaw that discourages users from upgrading their set.
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6 years ago, WAlexandero
Excellent App for learning bird songs
I have tried studying bird songs and call for years, starting with an Ornithology class in college 44 years ago. I’m part of a birdsong study group at a local nature reserve. But, I’ve found nothing as helpful as this app. I learned of it from a Teaching Company - National Geographic Ornithology course, and, boy, do I appreciate the tip!
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2 months ago, KayKayak
Great way to practice hearing birds
Separates the birds by habitat: Urban, forest, field l, backyard. That’s very helpful narrowing down when you’ll hear the bird. Also listening to four distinct birds at one time is just the right amount to practice hearing their special songs and separating the birds from one another.
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1 year ago, c4aa
Subscription model
I’ve been using this app to study for field work for quite a while as an alternative to the old thayer software, and buying content packs as needed. But all of a sudden it looks like the content is now only available as a subscription model rather than via one time purchases which is very disappointing.
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5 years ago, yooyyooy
Though it’s a bit pricey no other app is as useful for learning bird songs as this one because of its quiz yourself style. Recordings are numerous and variable for most species and are loud and clear. I credit Larkwire by far more than any other source aside from field observations for my earbirding competence in North America.
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4 years ago, Experiencepnw
Birding By Ear and testing
In preparation for an Audubon Society entrance exam for the Master Birder Program, I was making flash cards that I studied as I listened to McCauley Library calls. It was a clunky, time intensive way to memorize the 183 species in Western Washington. A fellow birder recommended Larkwire and as soon as I started using it, my learning capacity rose dramatically. It’s a fun, efficient way to learn.
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2 years ago, Kargee
What I’ve been waiting for
Finally a helpful way to learn birdsong. Such a useful tool! Instead of a course where I might learn a few local bird songs, this game teaches me many and let’s me progress at my own pace.
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4 years ago, RR461839
Great software, one annoying bug
I love this app, and I’m learning a ton. My only complaint so far is that occasionally a song fails to play (despite repeated toggling between play and pause) meaning that I have to guess blindly. Can be a very frustrating setback when it happens near the end of a tough round. Need to fix this bug!
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5 years ago, Lily Secret
I’ve only been using this app for a week and it has already greatly improved my birding by ear capability. Fun to use, very informative, and I especially like the written descriptions of the bird songs. This feature really helps me to retain the songs.
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10 months ago, ladela71
Content hidden behind expensive in app purchases
I really love the interface and how it trains you on bird calls and identification, but absolutely no way in earth is this worth the insane subscription price. I would have gladly paid a chunk of change to buy the modules I want but no way am I renting them. Hard pass.
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3 years ago, Common Merganser
Excellent app, excellent customer service
Hands down, the best app I’ve used to systematically learn bird identification through sounds. Customer service is also very responsive and helpful.
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4 months ago, GreenHeronHolly
Great Teaching Tool
Very effective at cementing the birds in your brain. Using the extra practice feature helps. It is best not to do too much in one session or you can get frustrated. I like the Daily Bird.
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4 years ago, magyen
Perfect for learning songs
This app is great for creating target species songs. I’m a long time birder and the app still tricks even with the more common birds I’m very familiar with. This is due to the multiple songs per species variations.
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5 years ago, DesertLesley
Love it!
This is a great, comprehensive learning tool. My only complaint is likely due to my level as a birder. Sometimes, it's obvious to distinguish birds at the beginner and intermediate levels (example: owl and common yellowthroat). Hoping I'll be able to train my ear to distinguish intra-family and other similar calls.
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1 year ago, Trex are birds too
Nice practice tool
Great app for learning bird songs/calls. Field mode is good, wish it offered multiple bird songs/calls playing at one time to get a true field experience and be able to practice having many birds calling at once.
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4 years ago, JM4748;738374848
Updated Version Worse than Original
The old version was decent, but the updated version barely works. I can’t click on certain things, and it keeps telling me “no recommendations” after playing one set of birds despite the fact that I have all the bird types selected. They also took away the feature where you can replace the birds in the gallery if you prefer different birds.
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5 years ago, tortwigg
Excellent for mastery
I took a field ornithology class as an eight-day Maymester. We were required to learn 93 different calls/songs and appearances in 8 days. Without this app, I would have been SOL on the audio ID. Great app for self quizzing/mastery.
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2 years ago, Smeltgirl
Fun way to learn bird song
I am still terrible at identifying bird song, but I am markedly LESS terrible at it with this app! My 4 year old likes playing it with me, too.
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2 months ago, Kb7689212
The app that finally taught me bird song
I’d always struggled to learn bird song and this app with it’s gamified learning finally did the trick and I enjoyed the learning.
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3 years ago, Even Bigger Daddy
Full of bugs, not just birds
Repeats same bird or pair of birds to exclusion of others in group (well over 50 times). Notes low percent correct identification even when I’ve correctly identified ALL. But at least I’ve not noticed any erroneous pairing of sounds with species!
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4 years ago, Semi-01
My 4yo loves this game, but it needs to read the bird name aloud
This game is great for me to refresh my bird songs and my 4 year old loves to play too and is getting pretty good. However she can't read the bird names. This app would get a fifth start for reading bird names aloud.
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3 years ago, minstrelm3drawing
Bird songs clarified!
Fabulous training technique. We play cooperatively on long drives and learn many birds. We liked the older visual format bett, but this works fine.
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4 years ago, Laurenmilr
Highly recommend!
I love this app! It’s helped me a lot with bird song identification, and I have a terrible ear. My three year-old loves listening to the birds in explore mode as well.
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5 years ago, Jack Curry
Praise from a Point Counter
I use this app every field season to prepare for the summer. It's such a fun way to learn/relearn bird songs. It's slopes up pretty slowly for beginners but it's got enough details for the real bird fanatics. Great app!
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3 years ago, armadillo1978
Great for learning bird sounds
Love this app. Addictive, like a video game. Identifying real birds in a real environment is really really hard. Practicing with Larkwire gives you a chance!
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