The following article talks about some of the best applications that mobile platforms have to offer for nature lovers. There’s no need to carry an atlas or nature’s guide for exploration anymore, all that you need to know about nature is available in your smartphone.
Did You Know?
With the App Store (iOS) and Google Play (Android) both having more than 800,000 apps, smartphone users have almost 1.7 million apps to choose from.
It is true that technology has caused irreparable damage to nature, and there are many of us who try to minimize the use of it on a daily basis. However, it is the same technology that has helped humans explore and understand nature. Let’s elaborate this statement…
At present, software developers have been successful in creating an app for almost everything. This means important items such as an atlas, maps, torch, nature’s guide, binoculars, reference and survival guides, etc., that are a must for nature exploration, are all available in the form of applications in mobile phones.
No more stuffing everything in a backpack, carrying it for miles, and then coming home with a strained shoulder; these days everything needed to understand nature is easily customized and put in your smartphone.
Before you get ready for your next adventure, check out some cool, informative, and naturey apps that Techspirited has enlisted for iPhone and Android users.
Nature lovers and xylology students are going to love this application. It works on a simple principle: click a picture of a leaf on a white background (a piece of paper or napkin would do), upload it on Leafsnap and it will identify the type with additional information. Leafsnap uses visual recognition software to identify leaves. The app was developed by researchers from Columbia University, University of Maryland, and the Smithsonian Institution. At present, the app contains trees from the Northeast, though the developers plan to include trees from the entire continental United States.
iBird Pro is specially designed to cater to the growing needs of budding ornithologists and professional naturalists. The app contains all the necessary information on different types of birds from around the globe. Users can also enjoy hand-drawn illustrations, range maps, and professional high-resolution pictures. The best feature about iBird Pro is its ability to play songs and calls of almost 938 bird species from the Macaulay Library of Natural Sounds at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.
One of the best apps for nature lovers, Project Noah helps you understand and spread knowledge about nature and wildlife. It aims to be the most used mobile app for nature discussions. Users first have to create an account and can then upload pictures of flora and fauna, which is shared among community members. Project Noah also allows its members to be a part of research projects, and help various organizations gather important information about nature.
With iNaturalist, you can also play a major role in saving and understanding nature. The app allows you to maintain a log of everything you encounter on a trip. It also helps you identify anything new or weird; just upload a snap, and the app will provide all the necessary information. The app also helps in making notes about recent climate change, levels of pollution, or any new plant or animal species that they might come across.
A great app for hikers and animal trackers, MyNature Animal Tracks helps you identify animal tracks and scat. The app boasts of an extensive collection of animal tracks, with complete description of their track measurements and gait patterns. You can also listen to various vocalizations and view stunning animal pictures.
Audubon Wildflowers helps you discover over 1700 different species of North American and Canadian wildflowers. It features over 3000 amazing pictures of flowers in their natural habitat with all the essential information and range maps. You can make use of the Life List and Sighting feature to record recent findings. The information and photos collected can be shared on NatureShare (a social platform through which members share or discuss information related to nature) with other members.
With mention of over 700 species of trees, Audubon Trees is a must-have app for nature lovers. The app is filled with in-depth information about trees, and their leaves, bark, and habitat. You can view over 3000 HD pictures clicked by professional nature photographers. Audubon Trees also features a gallery view that makes browsing for specific species a simple task. Users can also create a personal account that allows sharing of all sightings with the members of NatureShare.
For those who love exploring unknown natural territories, Google Maps is probably the best app a phone can have. An easy to use application that features street views, voice-guided turn-by-turn navigation, and nearby public transport facilities. An app that has won universal acclaim and various accolades, it is just impossible to lose your way with Google Maps.
Download from Play Store
Audubon again appears on the list for its amazing and detailed guide on over 500 different species of spiders and insects. The app displays detailed information on each species with their range, size, habitat, and much more, along with high-quality snaps. You can also keep a record of field experiences, sightings, photo albums, and notes.
One of the best apps built for off-road navigation, BackCountry is probably the most preferred app for hikers. It gives you an option of downloading maps for the US and other countries in advance, so that you can easily navigate even from the remotest parts without cell service. The GPS in your smartphone can locate its position through GPS satellites, and doesn’t require a cell data plan to get directions.
Download from Play Store
Probably the most resourceful app on this list, the SAS Survival Guide is probably the most reliable source in surviving moat situation. Written by a former SAS (Special Air Service) soldier and instructor, this survival guide app features over 400 pages of photos, videos, compass devices, Morse codes, first-aid information, and even a quiz that helps test your survival skills in uncharted territories.
These were some of the best nature apps available on the iOS and Android platforms. So download these apps, and you’ve got everything you need to make your nature experience safe and exciting.