A real life Pokemon Go is swapping the fictional characters … for our feathered natives.

The Aussie Backyard Bird Count has taken off as part of National Bird Week.

Ashleigh Dwan reports.

It’s designed to get people out and about to explore their local areas… but this national count also is crucial to the country’s bird data.

From plovers to butcher birds and everything in between… this new app allows all Australians to take part in the thrill of bird watching … from their own backyards.

Nick Leseberg, Ornithologist: “The good thing about bird watching, once you get into it, is that there are all different levels that you can get involved at.”

There are more than 800 different bird species in Australia … But only five hundred and 57 were spotted in last year’s count.

It’s the largest citizen science project in the country.

Sam Price, Bird Enthusiast: “The data is used for important conservation matters, what birds are where, where they are moving, where they are.”

BirdLife Australia is urging everyone to join in … they’re hope to reach more than one and a half million sightings.

As well as checking the health of bird numbers in Australia, there is one more incentive, the State of Origin.

Sam Price, Bird Enthusiast: “Last year Queensland spotted the most varieties but New South Wales submitted the most checklists. So this year I’d like to see Queensland at the top of both lists.”

You can download the app at the Aussie Birdcount website.

Ashleigh Dwan, QUT News.