Want your area to be in the 2019 City Nature Challenge? Read on!

In April this year, 64 cities across the globe used iNaturalist to compete in the 3rd annual City Nature Challenge. As a result, more than 425,000 observations were made in those places alone in a four-day period.

In 2019, the City Nature Challenge will take place April 26-29. Do you want to be involved? If so, please join a call for onboarding new organizers happening at several different times on Monday, August 27 (call 1, call 2, call 3). Please add your name to this document and note the time and call in information.
Updated: please see the comment below for more info on how to become an organizer.

This is a great opportunity for organizations and motivated individuals to build community and iNaturalist activity in your area, and there are plenty of experienced organizers to learn from during the planning process.

The map below shows cities that participated last year (green) along with the largest city in each country (yellow cities >0.5M population, grey cities <0.5M population). There are plenty of large cities outside of North America that could join! (We didn't add all of the cities where someone has expressed interest for 2019, but you can see here who's already planning to join the August 27/28 calls.

The iNaturalist staff want to acknowledge our gratitude for the massive international organizing effort led by @kestrel (California Academy of Sciences), @lhiggins & @amyjaeckerjones (both at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County). We just try to provide the infrastructure to enable friendly biodiversity competition!

Posted on August 24, 2018 12:41 AM by carrieseltzer carrieseltzer


I would like to participate in this event. I can not speak English well and it is difficult on the phone. Please contact us by email and we would like to translate and share your opinions.


Seosan, South Korea

PS. If the team that records Pyongyang is formed, I would like to participate as a member.

Posted by pintail almost 6 years ago

Hi @pintail! I added your contact information to the document to receive a recording of the call and notes. If you can find another co-organizer (even elsewhere in Korea) who can speak English, that might help with the international coordination. I am sure you can organize a big effort in South Korea!

Posted by carrieseltzer almost 6 years ago

I'm having trouble finding more information on this. Is it a free-for-all, or is it coordinated? Will there be a meetup spot in each city, or do you just do your own thing?

Posted by mws almost 6 years ago

@mws, it tends to be a combination of both, but depends on how the city organizes it. Everything within a large geographic area will count, so there are usually some organized bioblitz-type events, while others explore on their own. You can check out the City Nature Challenge 2018 projects and read their "news" to get a sense of how different cities organized.

Posted by carrieseltzer almost 6 years ago

Update: Here's more info from @kestrel and @lhiggins.

There are some important next steps to become a local organizer:

If you did not attend one of our calls, we recorded the third call yesterday.
Please listen to the call here: https://zoom.us/recording/share/E6nUjbZSO7cXt_NMW4unrDK5zwY6jZhvIei2v96qYcawIumekTziMw
And follow along with the agenda here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1-Kiu2rUl7hEOZPh5gfz8bJEZICrVcF7akal1pu-WaSg/edit?usp=sharing
This is key to understanding the responsibilities and expectations of being a local organizer.

Read over the Organizer Guidelines: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1mjUnUS0jIhxCTj1LJ3_yNIeegK0g7hZP5Jcp4k9uyP8/edit?usp=sharing
This outlines what we're asking organizers to agree to in being part of the City Nature Challenge.

Take all this information and decide if you/your organization has the capacity to organize the City Nature Challenge in your city for 2019. If you have questions you need answered before you can make a decision, please email both of us (Lila and Alison): lhiggins@nhm.org, ayoung@calacademy.org

If you decide to be an organizer for the 2019 City Nature Challenge, please sign up on this spreadsheet to officially become part of CNC 2019!: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/174MRi5LOg_Ybyvim-hYiuGrbqAXb10bQM7Ivd03E6hw/edit?usp=sharing
The deadline for signing up is September 21, 2018! If we don't hear from you, we'll assume you're not planning to take part in CNC 2019.

We'll hold our first planning phone calls with new and returning organizers in early October, so look for an email from us near the end of September.

If you're a returning City Nature Challenge organizer, please read over those Organizer Guidelines and make sure your name is on the official 2019 spreadsheet by September 21 as well!

Alison & Lila

Posted by carrieseltzer almost 6 years ago

Chances are, my city (part of the Greater Toronto Area) will be included in the Toronto city nature challenge next year. It wasn't included in this year's challenge, so there's no iNat project for it yet, as far as I know. Without an existing project, how do I find more information about Toronto's challenge?

Posted by mws almost 6 years ago

@mws I don't see anyone from Toronto on the list yet, but I'd expect the Royal Ontario Museum to get involved. I shared the CNC recruiting information with our contact for iNaturalist.ca, and they work with ROM. If you want to reach out to them as well, feel free!

Posted by carrieseltzer almost 6 years ago

I thought that cities on the map were participants, sorry.

Posted by mws almost 6 years ago

The problem with the Cape Town in the southern hemisphere is that April is well into our fall, so the worst time of the year organize such an event if one wants to see things - everything has shut down. Now a competition in September would be cool: then we could show you a thing or two!

Posted by tonyrebelo almost 6 years ago

Yes, April isn't great for the far northern hemisphere either. Perhaps if it continues to grow (with proper financial support as well), there will be a second date that favors those disadvantaged by an April date.

Posted by carrieseltzer almost 6 years ago

I know that deadline is over, but is it possible to include Croatia?

Posted by ribabo over 5 years ago

@ribabo, yes! There are planning calls starting this week. Check here for more info and to sign up: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1rf_SUAfq58GxUDvcrWO2caXi5FQqxD1mM_7IXHr3oIc/edit?usp=sharing

Posted by carrieseltzer over 5 years ago

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