long TBS image

Thayer Birding Software eNewsletter
February, 2012

Gold v5.5 
  Gold edition v5.5
GBNA v4.5 
  Birds of North America v4.5
State v4.5 
  Birds of My State or Province v4.5
Illinois v4.5 
  Birds of Illinois v4.5
Michigan v4.5 
  Birds of Michigan v4.5
Ohio v4.5 
  Birds of Ohio v4.5
Texas v4.5 
  Birds of Texas v4.5
Virginia v4.5 
  Birds of Virginia v4.5
Washington v4.5 
  Birds of Washington v4.5
Dear ,

Thayer Birding Software released free updates to all three versions of our software today. The Birds of North America DVD and Birds of My State or Province DVD are now version 4.5, rather than version 4.0. The Gold edition is now version 5.5, rather than version 5.0.

If you currently have version 4 or version 5 installed on your computer, you can get the updates for free.

[These updates are not available to folks still using version 3.0, 3.5 or 3.9. But you can get the new version at our online store:  www.OnlineNatureMall.com. Be sure to enter the promotional code  LOYAL  during checkout to get the loyal-customer discount.]

To get these free updates, just open the program and click Help and then click Check for Updates. [Actually you will need to do this TWICE to get the updates.] Mac users should click eViewer and then click Check for Updates...

The first update takes just a few seconds to download. The second time you check for updates the download may take 2-4 minutes since it is moving over 600 new photos to your computer!

Hint #1: When you check for updates, you may see a warning box telling you that the eViewer screen needs to be closed. Be sure to click OK. In fact, I highly recommend closing the main eViewer screen as soon as the program starts checking for updates. The update box will remain visible. (On rare occasions this screen may cover up a second screen that you need to see -- so just drag it to the side.) When you finish the first update, the program should close completely. Reopen the program and then check for updates AGAIN.

Hint #2: After updating the second time, Windows users should click Help and then click About eField Guide Viewer to make sure you are running version 4.5.0 or version 5.5.0. (Mac users should click eViewer and then click About eViewer.) You may want to rename your TBS desktop icon to reflect the new version number since the update did not do this automatically.

We have redesigned the covers of our DVDs for the new versions.  These new versions have a "cleaner" design and the case clearly shows version 4.5 or version 5.5.

The new retail price for the Gold edition v5.5 remains at $99.95. The retail price for Birds of North America v4.5 is $79.95 and the retail price for Birds of My State or Province v4.5 is $49.95.

In addition, we have decided to add 14 new State covers. Some folk like to see their individual State name on the DVD rather than the more generic Birds of My State or Province. These State DVDs are great gifts for backyard nature lovers, teachers and for kids just getting into birding. These 14 states represent 75% of the US population. (Even though the cover is different, the DVD inside is identical to the Birds of My State or Province DVD.) The retail price for these is also $49.95. The 14 states are: CA, FL, GA, IL, MI, MO, NC, NJ, NY, OH, PA, TX, VA and WA. You can order them at the OnlineNatureMall.

What's New?   More Birds !!    More Photos !!
  New Species Are Being Added to Each DVD

First of all, we added over 600 new images showing bird's eggs and nests. We were able to obtain these from The Chicago Academy of Sciences and its Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum.

Eastern Kingbird egg
Eastern Kingbird Egg
Emperor Goose nest
Emperor Goose Nest and Eggs

The Gold edition version 5.5 added 12 new species that have recently been seen in North America. Caribbean Elaenia is being removed -- the scientists at the American Ornithologists' Union have determined that this sighting was probably a White-crested Elaneia.  This will bring the total number of species included in the Gold edition up to 970. 

Birds of North America version 4.5 added 53 new species (and deleted 2), bringing the total to 753. We have decided to include all the common, uncommon, rare and extinct species in this DVD. Over 50 rare birds had previously been excluded. The very rare and accidental birds that have been seen just a few times (or once!) in North America are all in the Gold edition.

Birds of My State or Province version 4.5 will now include all birds on a state or province's checklist (unless a bird has been seen only a few times in all of North America.) Current versions of this DVD now include the 300 most common birds for each area. This change will result in a significant increase in species for most states and provinces -- over 150 additional birds in some cases!

Additional Improvements
  Quiz Changes and Updated Range Maps 

1. Some of the rare species and most of the very rare and accidental species have new range maps that pinpoint where the bird has been seen in North America.
2. Quizzes are now available in version 4.5 that let you look at range maps as the clue. I really like the "Pick One" quiz that displays four range maps. You can also now run quizzes that let you show the band code as the quiz answer.

Range Map Quiz
Pick One Range Map Quiz

3. We have added links to the amazing eBird animated range maps. They currently have over 50 species completed. We will be expanding this feature in the future as they add more maps.
Here is an example: Palm Warbler Occurrence Map

4. The Installation Program has been tweaked so that it is better able to install on computers set to a language other than English. We know our friends in Quebec will be pleased with this!

5. Sightings entries for multiple birds are now much easier. Click the "Save and Add..." button for multiple sightings entries.

6. The "Show Names" button on Pick-One Quizzes will let you see all four bird names immediately - no need to click the Back button any more.

7. Printed photos now include the bird's name

8. Quizzes on your Custom Lists can now show birds in random order OR in the same order that they appear in your Custom List.

9. Birds of Alaska is now one of the choices when you filter by regions.

10. Custom Lists now show the total number of species in each list on Mac computers.
Read the interview with WildBird Magazine's
2011 Birder of the Year Bonnie Clarfield-Bylin

"Most valuable birding reference in your library:

Thayer's Birding Software, Guide to Birds of North America"

See other comments from actual users of our DVDs

I would love to hear from you! Email me at




Pete Thayer, President
Thayer Birding Software