Bird ID Resources

Bird ID Resources

Sandhill Crane – Photo Credit: Dick Walker

What are you hearing in the forest? What are you seeing at your feeder? Below are a list of resources to help you figure out which of our feathered friends you are witnessing.

Bird Song CD

Did you know that some species of birds have different “dialects” or songs that they sing in different regions? Yup! A White-crowned Sparrow in the Sierras sounds different than one in Glacier National Park. Our very own Bruce Tannehill has been recording local bird songs for years and putting out a wonderful CD. The latest Western Montana Bird Songs CD has been updated in 2018 and deserves a listen if you’re birding in the Flathead!

Birds of the Flathead Valley

Check out our own list of common birds in the Flathead Valley. This shorter list can greatly increase your likelihood of birds to ID by decreasing the amount you are looking at. It includes links to wonderful articles written in the Pileated Post that offers a great deep-dive into these birds.

Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s Online Bird Guide

The amazing Cornell Lab of Ornithology has a fantastic, free online resource called All About Birds. In addition to a wonderful online bird guide, they also have birding tips, addictive webcams and much more! Visit for this invaluable resource.

Apps for your phone

Everyone has their smartphone with them these days and it also happens to be a great resource for IDing birds when you have the right apps. There are some great paid apps, but for those wanting to get started, a couple of free apps the we love are the Audubon Bird Guide App by National Audubon Society and the Merlin Bird ID App by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Oh, and if you’re going to go out and go birding, make sure you submit a checklist via the eBird App (link to app found on page).

Download them today and get birding!

Miscellaneous Publications

Montana Bird Checklist

Montana FWP has released their lates list of birds found across the state of Montana. The Checklist of Montana Birds – August 2018 includes whether the birds are breeding in the state as well as their presence in winter.

Birding Hotspots in the Flathead Basin

Flathead Audubon has published a printable bird checklist and hotspot guide called Birding Hotspots in the Flathead Basin.

Birding Guide to Flathead Valley of Northwest Montana

In cooperation with a few area chambers, Flathead Audubon published a brochure with a list of local hotspots with descriptions.