Integrations with other tools

birdseye can be used no matter how you write or run your code, requiring only a browser for the interface. But it’s also integrated with some common tools for a smoother experience.


snoop is another fairly similar debugging library by the same author. Typically you decorate a function with @snoop and it will log the execution and local variables in the function. You can also use the @spy decorator which is a combination of @snoop and @eye from birdseye so that you get the best of both worlds with no extra effort.

Jupyter/IPython notebooks

First, load the birdseye extension, using either %load_ext birdseye in a notebook cell or by adding 'birdseye' to the list c.InteractiveShellApp.extensions in your IPython configuration file, e.g. ~/.ipython/profile_default/

Use the cell magic %%eye at the top of a notebook cell to trace that cell. When you run the cell and it finishes executing, a frame should appear underneath with the traced code.

Jupyter notebook screenshot

Hovering over an expression should show the value at the bottom of the frame. This requires the bottom of the frame being visible. Sometimes notebooks fold long output (which would include the birdseye frame) into a limited space - if that happens, click the space just left of the output. You can also resize the frame by dragging the bar at the bottom, or click ‘Open in new tab’ just above the frame.

For convenience, the cell magic automatically starts a birdseye server in the background. You can configure this by settings attributes on BirdsEyeMagics, e.g. with:

%config BirdsEyeMagics.port = 7778

in a cell or:

c.BirdsEyeMagics.port = 7778

in your IPython config file. The available attributes are:

server_url:If set, a server will not be automatically started by %%eye. The iframe containing birdseye output will use this value as the base of its URL.
port:Port number for the background server.
bind_host:Host that the background server listens on. Set to to make it accessible anywhere. Note that birdseye is NOT SECURE and doesn’t require any authentication to access, even if the notebook server does. Do not expose birdseye on a remote server unless you have some other form of security preventing HTTP access to the server, e.g. a VPN, or you don’t care about exposing your code and data. If you don’t know what any of this means, just leave this setting alone and you’ll be fine.
 Set to True to show stdout and stderr from the background server.
db_url:The database URL that the background server reads from. Equivalent to the environment variable BIRDSEYE_DB.

Visual Studio Code extension

Usage is simple: open the Command Palette (F1 or Cmd+Shift+P) and choose ‘Show birdseye’. This will start the server and show a browser pane with the UI inside VS Code.

You can also search for birdseye under settings for configuration and possibly troubleshooting.


This isn’t really an integration, just some instructions.

The birdseye server needs to run in a web app for you to access it. You can either use a dedicated web app, or if you can’t afford to spare one, combine it with an existing app.

To use a dedicated web app, create a new web app, choose any framework you want (manual configuration will do), and in the WSGI configuration file /var/www/ put the following code:

from birdseye.server import app as application

To combine with an existing web app, add this code at the end of the WSGI file:

import birdseye.server
from werkzeug.wsgi import DispatcherMiddleware

application = DispatcherMiddleware(application, {

Here application should already be defined higher up as the WSGI object for your original web app. Then your existing web app should be unaffected, except that you can also go to to view the birdseye UI. You can also choose another prefix instead of '/birdseye'.

Either way, you should also ensure that your web app is secure, as birdseye will expose your code and data. Under the Security section of your web app configuration, enable Force HTTPS and Password protection, choose a username and password, then reload the web app.

PyCharm plugin

This plugin hasn’t worked for a long time and is no longer being maintained.