How can I share my bird photos with the Lab?

April 1, 2009
The Cornell Lab's Birdshare flickr group is a great what to share photos us. The Cornell Lab's Birdshare flickr group is a great way to share photos with us.
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We’re constantly thankful that people share so many wonderful images with us. If you’ve taken some photos and want other bird enthusiasts to see them, there are several ways to share them with us:

  • If you use eBird, you can add photos and sound to your checklists to verify notable birds or just to show off a picture or bird you’re particularly proud of. This media is then viewable by other eBird users through our eBird/Macaulay Library media search function. By uploading photos users agree to make them available to the Cornell Lab for use in various projects like developing our All About Birds species guide and our MerlinVision photo ID project. New to eBird? We have a free course that will show you everything you need to know.
  • Birdshare: This is the Cornell Lab’s primary photo-sharing group—as of June 2015, there are over 6,000 members and over 300,000 photos to explore. It’s hosted on Flickr—you just need to have a Flickr account, join the Birdshare group and start adding your photos. In joining, Birdshare users agree to let us use their photos on the Cornell Lab’s website. This photo group is a major source of photos for our free online species guide, and that guide couldn’t exist without the generosity of Birdshare members.
  • The Cornell Lab Facebook page: Join us on Facebook and upload your photos to our wall. Your photo will appear in “Visitor Posts,” which you can find by clicking on “Posts” in the left hand column of our page. In Visitor Posts, people can comment and help with ID questions. Each week we draw photos from this pool to highlight in Community Photos collections. (2/10/18: Facebook is experiencing difficulties sharing photos this way and unfortunately has not yet fixed this issue. If you are having trouble sharing photos, try sharing them by going to the “Photos” tab on the left side of our Facebook page, then click “See all,” where it says “[number] photos were posted by other people. See All.” Once you are here, click “Add a Photo.” Your photo will be added but will not be visible on this page. It WILL be visible in the Visitor Posts section, which you can get to by clicking on the “Posts” tab in the left hand column of the Cornell Lab’s Facebook page.)
  • Project-related contests and challenges: Project FeederWatch often runs their BirdSpotter photo contest during the winter, with the help of sponsor Bob’s Red Mill Natural Foods. Also check in with Celebrate Urban Birds, which runs a variety of photo challenges through the year. Both often feature prizes!

What if you’ve got a question about a photo but you don’t really want to share it? You can always send pictures for ID and other questions to We’ll do our best to answer—and we won’t share them without your permission.

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