Haikubox smart bird call identifier review – It listens and tells you what birds are in your yard

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REVIEW – Do you love birds but don’t want to actually go outdoors to watch them? No problem, the Haikubox does all the work for you by listening for birds and letting you know what it hears with notifications about the birds it hears. It also lets you hear the recorded bird calls from your yard. Is it awesome, or is it lame? Let’s find out.

What is it?

The Haikubox is a microphone that you install outside to listen for birdcalls.

What’s included?

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  • Haikubox
  • Power cord and power adapter
  • Quick start guide

Design and features

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The Haikubox has a plastic case with a microphone in the center.

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Holes in the case allow you to mount the Haikubox on a wall. This device is somewhat water resistant, but it’s not water proof. You don’t want to mount it low to the ground where it might end up floating in water if there’s a heavy rain or snow storm.

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A long 2-prong power cord with an inline transformer is attached to the unit.

Installing the Haikubox outside

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When I agreed to review the Haikubox, I didn’t realize that it required an outdoor power connection. The Haikubox does not have a built-in rechargeable battery or solar option. Lucky for me, I have a GFCI outdoor power outlet that I was able to use for the Haikubox.

The installation instructions suggest putting a loose knot in the cord to prevent water from running down the cord into the outlet. My particular outlet is designed to orient the cord in a downward position, to prevent this problem even further.

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The instructions instruct you to install the box where you have a good Wifi signal and to avoid noisy locations like near an outdoor AC unit, wind chimes, etc. I hung the Haikubox at the back of my house in the only location I have with a GFCI power outlet. Instead of screwing it into the concrete blocks on the back of my house, I just hung it from an already existing light fixture.

Once installed, you will need to install the Haikubox app on your iPhone or Android phone and follow the prompts to connect it to your home’s WiFi.

Haikubox app

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For years, I have used a free app called BirdNET to tell me what birds I hear during my daily outdoor walks around my property. This app lets you record bird sounds, which it analyzes and tells you what it hears. I was surprised to learn that the Haikubox uses this same tech from BirdNET, but instead of needing you to select the recordings to analyze manually, the Haikubox does it automatically all day and all night. And when it hears a new bird, it will notify you on your phone and Apple Watch.

The app is easy to navigate and provides a lot of fantastic info about the birds it hears. When a notification comes in, you will see a picture of the bird, and you’ll be able to play the sound that it recorded. If you tape the ebird link, it will take you to a page about that bird.

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The app will let you hear a variety of songs and calls for the bird it detected. You can compare these sounds to the sounds that the Haikubox captured from your yard.

It’s really exciting every time I get a notification because I know it’s a new bird.

The app has a lot of info about each bird including where and how many have been detected on a scrolling map.

The app can even provide information about the birds that are migrating in your area.

How accurate is it?

That is the question I was asking myself when it kept showing me all these birds I’ve never seen before. The app allows you to set the accuracy to Low, Med, and High settings. Even set to high, it detected birds I’d never seen before. But then I realized that this is the time of year (Spring) when birds migrate and it’s the time of year that I do see unusual birds. Yes, sometimes I don’t trust what it detects based on the very short audio clip, but most of the time, I do trust it because I’ll compare the audio clip to the website link where you can listen to a bird’s calls, and they match.


You’re probably wondering if a subscription is required for this gadget, and the answer is no, but with a caveat. Yes, you can use the Haikubox without a subscription, but a subscription gives you some extra features and a longer detection range. See below.

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Hear it in action

My Haikubox: https://birds.haikubox.com/listen/ECDA3B956674

A few birds that it heard and identified:

Pileated Woodpecker: https://haikubox.social/pilwoo_67_1715693534.html

Eastern Whip-Poor-Will: https://haikubox.social/easwpw1_97_1716083085.html

Wood Thrush: https://haikubox.social/woothr_81_1716209720.html

What I like about Haikubox

  • Super easy to use and install
  • Automatically listens for birds and tells you what it heard
  • It lets you listen to the actual recorded sounds from your yard
  • Links to more info about each bird

What needs to be improved?

  • I would love to see a solar or rechargeable version so that a dedicated outdoor outlet wouldn’t be a prereq

Final thoughts

I’ve enjoyed watching birds since I was a kid. I’ve even written about repurposing an old Blink camera as a bird cam. The Haikubox is another wonderful gadget I can add to my birdwatching toolbox. It’s exciting to receive a notification for a bird that I’ve never seen (or heard) before that is somewhere in my backyard. It makes me want to get out the bird feeders again so I can attract them to enjoy hearing them and seeing them too! If you’re also an avid birdwatcher or would like to become one, the Haikubox could be your gateway gadget to a whole new hobby.

Price: $199.00 and up (optional subscription $59 per year)
Where to buy: Haikubox and Amazon
Source: The sample for this review was provided by Haikubox. Haikubox did not have a final say on the review and did not preview the review before it was published.

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