SAN ANSELMO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Appweavers Inc. developers of natural history apps for the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad, today announced a significant milestone for their free backyard bird guide. Initially released in April of this year, Peterson Feeder Birds of North America, a comprehensive guide to 160 North American backyard birds, passed 100,000 downloads from the iTunes App Store. To celebrate, the company is extending its innovative Bird Finder service, previously available only to users of the company's paid app, Peterson Birds of North America, to users of the free backyard birds app.
Peterson Feeder Birds of North America is based on the highly acclaimed Peterson Field Guide series of natural history books published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. The app features Roger Tory Peterson's inimitable bird illustrations and his unique series of arrows highlighting field marks that differentiate one bird from another.
Appweavers has leveraged the design and organization of the best-selling book, Peterson Field Guide to Birds of North America, in developing the feeder birds app. A unique user interface guides the user through the process of identifying birds he observes, with similar species grouped for easy comparison. Zoomable illustrations show male, female, juvenile, and in-flight images, and a tap on the screen allows for side-by-side comparison of bird songs and range maps. In addition to illustrations, songs, and range maps, the app gives detailed information from eight Peterson Guides and includes indexes, search, sightings, and life list features.
"We are extremely pleased with the way users have taken to the new Peterson Feeder Birds app," said Lisa White, Director of Guidebooks at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. "Roger Tory Peterson dedicated his life to raising awareness of our natural environment, and this app does a fantastic job of furthering that goal."
Last month, Appweavers debuted Bird Finder, a free web-based service that lets users download lists of birds for specific locations across the U.S. and Canada. Each list customizes the Peterson app to the user’s geographic location. Lists also include sighting frequency indicators, showing anticipated abundance of each species for every week of the year. These are essential aids to birders trying to determine whether an observed bird is normally found at a particular location.
Bird Finder uses the Peterson app’s unique listing feature. Tapping on a specially formatted web link or on a file attached to an email message, from a mobile device, automatically imports the list to the app. Users can then save the list as an icon on their home screen for fast access.
Appweavers currently provides lists of birds for every county in the U.S. and Canada and for specific points of interest recorded in the Cornell Lab of Ornithology eBird database. Bird watchers from around the world regularly update eBird with their observations. More than three million sightings were recorded in June of this year alone. This wealth of information has made Corenell’s eBird database one of the largest sources of biodiversity information in the world, and Appweavers is not alone in providing access to this “Big Data.” Apps like the popular BirdsEye also offer indispensable aids to birders. To celebrate the 100,000th download, users of the Peterson Feeder Birds app now have access to lists for every county in the U.S. and Canada, tailored for backyard birds.
"While apps like BirdsEye give users an excellent up-to-the-minute view of bird activities in their neighborhood, they lack historical context," said Nigel Hall, President, Appweavers. "With aggregated information for every species recorded at geographic locations across the U.S. and Canada, Bird Finder lists provide a more comprehensive aid to identifying birds, and they will be a boon to Peterson Feeder Birds users."
About Appweavers Inc.
Appweavers is a San Francisco Bay Area software company focusing on natural history applications for mobile computing devices. The company has a multi-product licensing agreement with Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for development of mobile apps based on the highly respected Peterson Field Guide series of books.
About Houghton Mifflin Harcourt’s Trade & Reference Division
With nearly two-centuries of award-winning history, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt’s Trade and Reference Division continues to publish some of the most renowned novels, non-fiction, children’s books and reference works in hardcover, Mariner Books trade paperbacks and ebooks. Its distinguished author list includes eight Nobel Prize winners, 47 Pulitzer Prize winners, 13 National Book Award winners, and more than 100 Caldecott, Newbery, Printz, and Silbert Medal and Honor recipients. HMH publishes such distinguished authors as Philip Roth, Temple Grandin, Tim O'Brien, and Umberto Eco, as well as The Best American series®, The American Heritage® family of dictionaries, The Gourmet Cookbook and other culinary classics, the Peterson Field Guides and books by J.R.R. Tolkien. Along with a celebrated lineup of children’s authors, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Children's Book Group is the publisher of some of the best-loved children's books and book characters including Curious George, The Little Prince and The Polar Express. For more information, visit www.hmhbooks.com.
For more information about Peterson apps, see petersonguides.com
Peterson Feeder Birds of North America is available now from the iTunes App Store
For more information about Bird Finder, see petersonguides.com/BirdFinder
Introduction to Bird Finder video, see Youtube video
Introduction to Bird Finder U.S. and Canadian county lists video, see Youtube video
For more information on Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, see hmhco.com.
For more information on the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, see birds.cornell.edu.
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