We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission.
With over 18,000 bird species around the world, it can be difficult to identify the winged creatures that come and go in your backyard. Thankfully, you won’t have to memorize all of them; you can just use an app.
New Jersey-based naturalists Scott Whittle, Mike Lanzone, and Casey Halverson have created a device and app called Terra, which can identify birds through their chirping and singing. The gadget, which looks like a minimalist mushroom, can be planted in the ground and it will then listen to any bird song. On the app, you can see the profile of your feathered visitor while enjoying their soothing live-streamed melodies.
If you’ve ever listened to one of those nature ambience soundtracks on YouTube, you know that it’s quite repetitive and feels artificial. With Terra, you’ll actually be serenaded by nature’s best performers.
For those who are into gardening, Terra can also use its sensors to measure data on soil moisture, weather conditions, and overwatering. I guess you could say the gadget can, in a way, hit two birds with one stone (figuratively, of course).
But perhaps its most important feature is that it can gather data from all the Terra devices in various places and use the information to aid conservation efforts. Its makers explained: “By collecting bird (and animal) sounds both day and night, Terra devices will track the movements of migration to a whole new level. Scientists and conservationists will be able to understand birds and animal movements on a grand scale, and take action to preserve habitat and save wildlife with a whole new level of precision.”