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“We’ve got an app for that!”

January 13, 2012

DPI’s plant guru, Dr. Patti Anderson, recently contributed to the development of a free app available in iTunes. Anderson provided photographs of various plant species and a plethora of botanical information for the app called Nature Viewing Along the Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Viewing Trail. This is a perfect gadget for the nature-loving Florida resident or visitor interested in learning about the Sunshine State’s diverse wildlife.

With this app, users can identify plants and animals along the Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Viewing Trail, which is a 2,000 mile self-guided highway trail that connects nearly 500 birding and wildlife viewing sites throughout Florida. Whether you’re interested in black-eyed susans, hairy woodpeckers or swallowtail butterflies, this app helps its users easily identify Florida species by selecting basic characteristics, like color, size and shape. Once you identify the species that you are viewing, the app offers further information about it, like host plants for the butterflies, and invasive plants that are threatening Florida native species. And if you’re a visitor traveling through Florida and are searching for a wildlife trail, the app has a tool which can locate the birding and wildlife viewing trail nearest you.

Here are a few special features:

  • Search for 200 birds by name, or filter by color, size, shape and season.
  • Search for 106 butterflies by name, or filter by color, size and family. Compare to similar species and learn about their larval host plants.
  • Search for 247 flowering plants by name, or filter by color, size, flower type, flower arrangement and plant form. Learn about some of Florida’s most notorious invasive plants.
  • Access a list of the 491 sites along the Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Viewing Trail; search nearby sites by current location or any city in Florida. Find the sites on a map.
  • Learn about Florida’s unique habitats and current conservation concerns.
  • Bookmark favorite species and sites.

This Nature Viewing application was developed by the Florida Museum of Natural History, University of Florida IFAS Department of Entomology and Nematology and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, with support from grants from the Florida Wildflower Foundation and Florida Museum Associates. The app has already received excellent customer reviews and five star ratings. Try it out and let us know what you think!

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