This is a helpful alert to anyone still using the original Sibley Birds app, which was has not been maintained or updated since it was replaced by the Sibley Birds V2 app in 2018. Some users are reporting that the app will not open after the latest iOS update (June 2021). If you are still using the old app, you should be sure to export and save a backup of any lists you have in the app, and consider upgrading to the new and improved Sibley Birds V2 app.
It’s been about ten years since the original Sibley Birds app was launched in 2011. Technology, and our knowledge of birds, has grown by leaps and bounds since then.
The Sibley Birds V2 app uses all of the new art, text, and maps from the second edition of the Sibley Guide to Birds, with even more new content added in regular updates. The V2 app also includes a lot of new and useful features including monthly status data for every state and province, similar species lists and an improved comparison feature, and more. The original Sibley Birds app, which used content from the first edition of the book, was “retired” in 2018 – no longer available for sale in the app stores and no longer updated or maintained. We knew that without regular updates to keep up with changes in operating systems and newer phones it would eventually stop working.
Some iPhone users are now (June 2021) reporting that after they update their phones to the latest iOS, the app will not open. Instead the phone shows an error message something like “The developer needs to update this app…”. Unfortunately this is not possible, but you can rest assured that the Sibley Birds V2 app is being diligently maintained and updated.
For most users the old app is still working, but it’s not clear how long that will last. And it’s not clear yet what is triggering the error, but presumably it involves some combination of the V1 app version (maybe running an older version of the app) and/or phone model conflicting with the newest iOS. What is clear is that any operating system update could be the last for the original app. If you are still using the old Sibley Birds app, please make sure you have a backup of any lists you might have made in the app, and take a look at all of the new content and features you could get in the V2 app.
If you are locked out of the app and need to recover your bird list:
There is a way to get a list from the old version of the app to the new version, it is a bit complex but does seem to work.
1. Connect your phone to a computer and Copy the list file from the old app:
If using a Mac you can use this method to pull the list file from the old app: https://support.apple.com/en-gb/HT210598
for Windows you can use this method https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201301
Look for “Sibley Birds” and the file needed is called SIBDBList.sql. Save this file somewhere on your computer eg. Desktop.
2. Rename the saved list file:
The file needs to be renamed to SIBDBList.sibexp Only the file extension (after the dot) needs to be changed from .sql to .sibexp
Answer yes to any prompts asking if you are sure that you want to rename the file.
3. Upload the renamed file to iCloud:
Go to https://www.icloud.com/iclouddrive/ and log in. Drag the SIBDBList.sibexp file into the window and let it upload to iCloud.
4. Import the iCloud file into Sibley Birds V2
Go into the Sibley V2 app on your device. Go to My List. Tap More (top right). Choose “Restore Backup from Location”. Answer Yes to prompt saying the current list will be overwritten. Browse to iCloud Drive and choose the SIBDBList.sibexp file. The app will now try to download and import the items from this file into your app, this could take a bit of time.
If you have any questions just send a message