Transferring the knowledge learned from large scale datasets (e.g., ImageNet) via fine-tuning offers an effective solution for domain-specific fine-grained visual categorization (FGVC) tasks (e.g., recognizing bird species or car make and model). In such scenarios, data annotation often calls for specialized domain knowledge and thus is difficult to scale. In this work, we first tackle a problem in large scale FGVC. Our method won first place in iNaturalist 2017 large scale species classification challenge. Central to the success of our approach is a training scheme that uses higher image resolution and deals with the long-tailed distribution of training data. Next, we study transfer learning via fine-tuning from large scale datasets to small scale, domain-specific FGVC datasets. We propose a measure to estimate domain similarity via Earth Mover’s Distance and demonstrate that transfer learning benefits from pre-training on a source domain that is similar to the target domain by this measure. Our proposed transfer learning outperforms ImageNet pre-training and obtains state-of-the-art results on multiple commonly used FGVC datasets.