Welcome, ArgentiNat — iNaturalist Argentina! ¡Bienvenido, ArgentiNat!

Today we officially celebrate the public launch of ArgentiNat — iNaturalist Argentina as the newest member of the iNaturalist Network. ArgentiNat is a collaboration with Fundación Vida Silvestre Argentina with support from the National Geographic Society.

Hoy celebramos oficialmente el lanzamiento público de ArgentiNat — iNaturalist Argentina, como nuevo miembro de la red iNaturalist. ArgentiNat es una colaboración con la Fundación Vida Silvestre Argentina con apoyo de la National Geographic Society.

The name “ArgentiNat” is a portmanteau of “Argentina” and “iNaturalist”, and it’s pronounced ar-gen-TEE-nat. In Spanish, “iNaturalist” is a somewhat awkward word, because the “i” in “iNaturalist” is usually pronounced “ee”, so it sounds more like “eNaturalist”. Thus, the name ArgentiNat was born.

El nombre “ArgentiNat” es un juego de palabras entre “Argentina” e “iNat”, el nombre coloquial de iNaturalist, y se pronuncia como se escribe. Se eligió este nombre ante la dificultad de pronunciar iNaturalist como suena en inglés (la “i” se pronuncia “ai”). Por esta razón y buscando un nombre fácil de recordar nació el nombre ArgentiNat.

ArgentiNat has the distinction of being the first member of the iNaturalist Network to adopt the new iNaturalist branding style released earlier this month. Their logo is a giant anteater an iconic species and very well known in Argentina - is a symbol of conservation, as it is an endangered species, mostly found on areas which need to be protected. It is also the largest of all living xenarthrans, and as such a representative of South America. For this reason it is also the symbol of Vida Silvestre.

ArgentiNat tiene la distinción de ser el primer miembro de la red iNaturalist en adoptar el nuevo estilo de marca lanzado a comienzos de este mes. El logo es un oso hormiguero gigante, una especie icónica y muy conocida en Argentina: es un símbolo de la conservación al tratarse de una especie amenazada que se encuentra en áreas que dependen de la protección. Es además el mayor de los xenartros que viven en el presente, y como tal un representante de América del Sur, continente donde se originó este grupo de mamíferos. Por la misma razón también es el símbolo de Vida Silvestre.

Just last week, Argentina passed 100,000 verifiable observations, which ranks it 23rd globally in terms of iNaturalist activity. You can read more about activity trends in Argentina in the iNaturalist World Tour post from July 16. @roget, who co-authored the World Tour post, is the primary point of contact for ArgentiNat in his role with Vida Silvestre.

La semana pasada, Argentina alcanzó las 100.000 observaciones verificables, lo que posiciona al país en el puesto 23 en términos de actividad en iNaturalist. Se puede leer más sobre las tendencias de actividad en la publicación de la Gira Mundial de iNaturalist del 16 de julio. @roget, quien es el co-autor de esa publicación, es el principal punto de contacto para ArgentiNat a través de su rol en Vida Silvestre.

The iNaturalist Network now has nine nationally-focused sites that are fully connected and interoperable with the global iNaturalist site. The sites are: NaturaLista Mexico, iNaturalist NZ — Mātaki Taiao (formerly NatureWatch NZ), iNaturalist Canada, Naturalista Colombia, Biodiversity4All (Portugal), iNaturalist Panamá, iNaturalist Ecuador, iNaturalist Australia and now ArgentiNat. Any iNaturalist user can log in on any of the sites using their same credentials and will see the same notifications.

La red iNaturalist ahora tiene nueve sitios con foco nacional que están completamente conectados y son interoperables con el sitio global de iNaturalist. Estos sitios son: Naturalista Mexico, iNaturalist Canada, iNaturalist New Zealand (anteriormente NatureWatchNZ), Naturalista Colombia, BioDiversity4All (Portugal), iNaturalist Panama, iNaturalist Ecuador, iNaturalist Australia, y ahora ArgentiNat. Cualquier usuario de iNaturalist puede iniciar sesión en cualquiera de estos sitios usando las mismas credenciales y verá las mismas notificaciones.

The iNaturalist Network model allows for localizing the iNaturalist experience to better support communities on a national scale and local leadership in the movement, without splitting the community into isolated, national sites. The iNaturalist team is grateful to the outreach, training, translations, and user support carried out through the efforts of the iNaturalist Network member institutions.

El modelo de la red iNaturalist permite localizar la experiencia de iNaturalist para apoyar mejor a las comunidades a nivel nacional y un liderazgo mejor en el movimiento, sin dividir a la comunidad en sitios nacionales aislados. El equipo de iNaturalist agradece el alcance, las capacitaciones, las traducciones y el apoyo a los usuarios que se llevan a cabo con esfuerzo de las instituciones miembro de la red iNaturalist.

We look forward to welcoming many new Argentinian members of the iNaturalist community and watching how participation grows during the southern hemisphere spring and summer!

Esperamos dar la bienvenida a muchos nuevos miembros de Argentina en la comunidad de iNaturalist y ver cómo la participación aumenta durante la primavera y el verano del hemisferio sur.

Posted on November 21, 2019 15:54 by carrieseltzer carrieseltzer | 1 comments | Leave a comment
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iNaturalist Training: Thursday, December 4th at Katonah Library. 7-8pm

Hey everyone -
The Bedford Conservation Board and Healthy Yards are hosting an iNaturalist training session on December 4th, 2019 at the Katonah Library from 7-8pm. I'll be presenting about the app itself, but also helping train people in town for the upcoming "City Nature Challenge" on April 24-27 where we'll be competing with municipalities around the world for biodiversity!
Please spread the word!
Murray (and Filippine and Fiona)

Posted on November 21, 2019 13:56 by swampchicken swampchicken | 0 comments | Leave a comment

Chinsegut Wildlife Day!

Chinsegut Wildlife Day, created in 2016, is organized by Gina Long, Director at Chinsegut Conservation Center and Alice Mary Herden, FWC Volunteer and professional sports and nature photographer.

The focus of the event is to bring more awareness not only to Chinsegut Conservation Center but also to other beautiful areas Hernando County has to offer. Chinsegut Wildlife Day allows the public to meet those who maintain and oversee Hernando’s natural areas and preserve ecosystems to benefit wildlife. The event is a great way for Florida residents and visitors to learn about the diversity of habitats in Florida, the agencies who manage them and how to take personal action to protect wildlife. A diversity of live wildlife may also be viewed during this event allowing an up-close look at some of Florida’s fascinating fauna.

“Thank you for joining us for this event, and we hope you will be inspired to continue learning more about Florida's wildlife.” Alice Mary Herden

Saturday, March 7, 2020 | Brooksville, FL | Chinsegut Conservation Center

Posted on November 21, 2019 12:41 by alicemaryherden alicemaryherden | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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BirdLife-SA Big Birding Day 2019

The Birdlife-SA Big Birding Day is due to take place on the 30th November. Big Birding Day is an annual national event organized by Birdlife South Africa which raises funds for bird conservation and is a fun way for watching and learning about birds. This year the event coincides with Wessa Lowveld's Bioblitz Challenge and all keen birders/ naturalists living or visiting the lowveld during this period are encouraged to take part in this opportunity.

The Southern Lowveld area has an exceptionally high diversity of birds and there would potentially be up to 300 possible species from the region that could be recorded on the day. These include a variety of raptors such as eagles, vultures, owls and accipiters, waterbirds, spurfowl, plovers, korhaans, kingfishers, turacos, shrikes, robin-chats, rollers, woodpeckers, flycatchers, starlings, hornbills, bee-eaters, mousebirds, tits, sunbirds, bulbuls, barbets, hoopoes, parrots, cuckoos, coucals, turacos, doves, drongos, orioles, oxpeckers, honeyguides, wagtails, swallows, swifts, nightjars, thrushes, babblers, warblers, cisticolas, larks , pipits, weavers, sparrows, whydahs, finches, canaries and buntings.

The varied habitats in southern Kruger (from the hilly south-west Malelane Mountain Bushveld, Mixed bushwillow woodlands, Open Savannahs and Sabie/Crocodile Thorn Thickets and Lebombo mountains) as well as the rivers and seasonal pans each contain their respective complement of bird species and are worth visiting. Many of the towns in the region such as White River, Nelspruit and Malelane also provide favourable habitat for garden birds and other species. During this time of the year the migrants are back and many species are actively breeding making for a productive time for birds and birdwatchers alike.

The rules for Big Birding Day are:

# Record all the bird species seen or heard during a 24-hour period from midnight on Friday 29 November to midnight on Saturday 30 November 2019.
# Teams can consist of a maximum of four members.
#The maximum area that can be visited is an area within a radius of 50 km.
#Only free-flying birds may be recorded (i.e. no caged birds).
# The majority (for example 2 out of three or 3 out of four) of the team members have to agree on a call or sighting.
# Teams are requested to limit the use of callback to attract birds to an absolute minimum.

To participate in Big Birding Day, you can register via this link:

Participants are encouraged to also post their sightings on this i-naturalist project (Wessa Lowveld BioBlitz Challenge) after the event.

Posted on November 21, 2019 08:16 by loonatick loonatick | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Botswana joins Nature and Plastic!

Welcome to Botswana, the first landlocked country to join Nature and Plastic, and the second African nation to participate. Thank you to @botswanabugs for enthusiastically setting up the Terrestrial project for his country:

Posted on November 21, 2019 07:36 by jacqui-nz jacqui-nz | 1 comments | Leave a comment

Welcome to ESA 19 in Launceston!

The Atlas of Living Australia has recently launched iNaturalist Australia, a localised interface into the popular global biodiversity social network. You can read more on the ALA's blog post about the launch.

Let's do a BioBlitz for the conference! Any observations that are added in the Launceston area and on Wednesday's field trips (ie the areas listed) will be automatically included into this iNaturalist project.

Posted on November 21, 2019 06:12 by peggydnew peggydnew | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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50 000 наблюдений

27 регионов присоединилось к нашему проекту, это позволило пройти цифру 50 тыс наблюдений! Это составляет 80.74% наблюдений от Птицы России.


Posted on November 21, 2019 06:00 by birdchuvashia birdchuvashia | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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More milestones: 250 species & 1000 observations

As the diving/snorkeling season is now upon us, I'm thrilled to see a wave of new observations added to the project area.

Special thanks must be given to @davemmdave for his keen eye for detail and making uncommon sightings... his recent visit to Port Noarlunga is a reminder of the power of a new perspective and pair of eyes! I'd also like to acknowledge @hfb for her assistance with algae identification from the USA, and @mtank for his work trying to make sense of that poorly studied group: ascidians.

Sponge, algae and ascidian identifications remain problematic, but represent a significant proportion of the biota of the project area. This area is ripe for private study and expert assistance.

Our geographical coverage of the project area continues to improve, with the largest data gap now being the southern section of reef which lies beyond the path of most divers who visit the area. This can be accessed from shore, but not easily by weak swimmers, as the round trip would likely involve a swim distance of roughly a kilometre, much of which is over uninspiring sandy bottom.

Thanks to everyone who's participated in sharing their observations and identifications to date... this project is streaks in front of any other on the Onkaparinga coast, with the exception of Aldinga Bay (which is competing on species count). The Aldinga Bay project does cover a much larger geographical area, but is also fortunate to receive regular contributions from the keen eyes of @wamoz .

If you'd like to see how sighting data is accumulating across the Onkaparinga region, check out this project:

Posted on November 21, 2019 02:39 by danimations danimations | 4 comments | Leave a comment

First live observation of Swamp Rabbit Confirmed!

Hello Friends!
So this past week was a really good week! After finding the popular latrine log on the North San Gabriel River two weeks back, and placing my camera on it last week, we got two videos of it being used and one of those observations is backed up by one of the other cameras. Both observations have been confirmed and they represent the first live images of Swamp Rabbit that we have documented since we started our Nature Tracking project with Texas parks and Wildlife.
I collected some more fresh scat and my family continues to grumble about the growing quantity of vials in the freezer! Dr. Russell Pfau of Tarleton State University has a plan in place for some early December DNA analysis. We are hopeful of his success!

We managed to get a an American Woodcock on trail camera this week too!

We have been seeing a lot of cottontail rabbits in our nighttime images and those are just too impossible to determine species I think. Looking back at the three documented Swamp Rabbits I observed in 2018 and early 2019, the benefiting factors for identification were color images, or the fact that the animal was in the water at night and happy about it apparently.
I have been becoming more inclined to use another type of camera to achieve a night time color image. The flash necessary for this is one that would be visible to animals and because of this I would not leave set up for very much time. Hopefully it will be not much different than lightning experienced by animals and certainly the flash duration, at fractions of a second, are not capable of causing harm to eyes. Perhaps next month we may have something in the works regarding this.
Short of trapping animals and releasing, something I know nothing about, I can think of no other method worth trying for short term use and quick answers.
Until next time,
Cheers everybody! And Happy Thanksgiving.

Posted on November 21, 2019 00:58 by mikef451 mikef451 | 9 observations | 6 comments | Leave a comment
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Endangered monarch butterflies get help from Yolo Resource Conservation District.

The Yolo County Resource Conservation District is working with the Xerces Society and landowners to increase breeding and foraging habitat for western monarch butterflies across the county.

Posted on November 21, 2019 00:45 by biohexx1 biohexx1 | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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UC ANR On How to Attract Bug-Eating Birds to Farms.

Hedgerows bordering farmland – plantings with native trees, shrubs, bunch grasses and wildflowers – support bug-eating birds, which helps with on-farm pest control, according to research by recent UC Davis graduate Sacha Heath and UC Cooperative Extension advisor Rachael Long. The study was published in the October 2019 issue of the online journal Ecosphere.

Posted on November 21, 2019 00:34 by biohexx1 biohexx1 | 0 comments | Leave a comment

large Japanese cormorants*

Two smaller cormorants are fairly easily identified. The two bigger Great Cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo hanedae) and Japanese - or Temminck's - Cormorant cause more trouble.
Sublte differences are recognised but not always easily applied in the field.
Because I too struggle from time to time, I will give the main ID-paper links here... in the hope to get this problem fixed sometime soon and to help others maybe to ID their Japanese larger phalacrocorax records.

NB. feel free to comment, add links to (japanese) texts or.... please... thanks in advance.

Temminck's <> hanedae Great Cormorant

general features to be checked:
Phalacrocorax capillatus
broad and high ending white cheek
angular yellow patch
slightly more gentle , sloaping head.

Location: both species may occur inland and in coastal areas. I don't think that is a safe IDentifier. General opinion though apparently is that capillatus is more tied to the coast,

NB. I don't claim scientific status for these scribbles. It's just a reminder of what to look for.

Posted on November 20, 2019 23:35 by housecrows housecrows | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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BioBlitz results!

Thank you so much for joining our second Almaden Quicksilver BioBlitz! We recorded close to a thousand observations of 230 species, which is quite amazing, considering the timing - the end of fall, before the rain. Most of the flowers were already gone, many of the galls already dropped to the ground, and fungi and slime molds haven't emerged yet.
We documented 80 species of plants, including at least 6 of our native oak species, we noticed toyon bushes heavy with berries, and last years buckeye seeds ready to germinate when the rain will finally arrive. Lichens are especially difficult to identify (and notice), and we were lucky to have lichen experts on board, documenting 32 lichen species!!
We were also lucky to have expert birders with us, documenting 31 bird species, including 4 woodpecker species, and 14 observations of wild turkeys...
We documented almost 70 arthropod species, many of them are gall wasps. The high diversity of oak species contributes to the hike diversity of gall wasps - 20 species! Many of the galls on the white oaks - valley oaks and blue oaks - already dropped to the grounds, but we were still able to find some. The rest will drop soon. This park has an unusual high diversity of coast live oak galls - we documented 7 species! Interestingly, we saw both the spring and the summer generations of some of the species.
We hope to see you on our future events!
You can find all our future events here -

Posted on November 20, 2019 18:52 by merav merav | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Preparação para 2020


Estamos nos aproximando do final do ano e também entrando no período de preparação do Desafio de 2020.

Para começar, creio que o nome que escolhi no ano passado, apesar de ser bem explicativo, era muito extenso. Portanto, gostaria de ver se concordam com mudar para:
1- Desafio da Natureza Urbana
2- Desafio da Natureza das Cidades

Outra coisa muito importante é começarmos a identificar quem topa articular pequenas bioblitz em algum parque ou próximas às suas casas com grupos de naturalistas conhecidos, escolas, escoteiros, caminhantes etc. Qualquer área verde do DF é elegível.

Quem estiver disposto a colaborar com a organização de grupos ou locais, por favor, mande um e-mail para ou zap para 61 98529-6474.



Posted on November 20, 2019 15:39 by onildo_marini onildo_marini | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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ТОП-10 Птиц России

ТОП-10 Птиц России!!! по версии #iNaturalist

Самые узнаваемые виды, прошедшие цифру 1000 наблюдений!
1533 наблюдения Parus major Большая Синица
1519 наблюдений Anas platyrhynchos Кряква
1326 наблюдений Motacilla alba Белая Трясогузка
1250 наблюдений Turdus pilaris Дрозд-Рябинник
1167 наблюдений Pyrrhula pyrrhula Снегирь
1105 наблюдений Corvus cornix Серая Ворона
1074 наблюдения Dendrocopos major Большой Пёстрый Дятел
1026 наблюдений Passer montanus Полевой Воробей
1018 наблюдений Fringilla coelebs Зяблик
1017 наблюдений Columba livia Сизый Голубь

Posted on November 20, 2019 13:47 by birdchuvashia birdchuvashia | 0 comments | Leave a comment

150 видов

У нас очередное событие - 150 видов в проекте. Большое спасибо @elena358 за активное участие в наполнении проекта! У Елены сегодня еще одна круглая цифра - 100 сфотографированных в Кировской области видов птиц. Поздравляем и желаем новых видов и интересных фото.
По состоянию на 20.11.2019 в проекте 1317 - НАБЛЮДЕНИЙ, 150 - ВИДОВ, 207 - ЭКСПЕРТОВ, 12 - НАБЛЮДАТЕЛЕЙ

Posted on November 20, 2019 12:16 by anisimov-43 anisimov-43 | 1 comments | Leave a comment
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25 регионов!

Друзья, в нашем зонтичном проекте 25 регионов! Поздравляю с первой круглой датой! Особенно Новые регионы, которые создались под этот проект!

Особая благодарность Админам проектов регионов! Вот какая у нас команда!!!

Фиксируем статистику:
48 836 - НАБЛЮДЕНИЙ, 456 ВИДОВ, 1 543 - ЭКСПЕРТ, 1 037 - НАБЛЮДАТЕЛЬ
Нас всего 25 регионов, но он объединяет 78.75% всех наблюдений Птиц России!.

12 772 - Birds of the Altai krai
6 301 - Птицы Москвы и Подмосковья
4 436 - Птицы Нижегородской области
3 686 - Птицы Новосибирской области / Birds of Novosibirsk region
3 089 - Птицы Томской области
2 782 - Птицы Красноярского края
2 620 - Птицы Санкт-Петербурга и Ленинградской области
2 299 - Birds of Chuvashia
1 380- Птицы Курской области
1 352 - Птицы Республика Алтай
1 310 - Птицы Кировской области
1 159 - Рязанский клуб Птицы | Birds of Ryazan
1 055 - Птицы Республики Карелия | Birds of Karelia Republic
804 - Птицы Владимирской области | Birds of Vladimir region
700 - Birds of Kamchatka region Птицы Камчатского края
586 - Птицы Свердловской области
572 - Птицы Волгоградской области
567 - Птицы Удмуртской республики
321 - Птицы Ярославской области
287 - Птицы Новгородской области / Birds of Novgorod Oblast
265 - Птицы ЯНАО | Birds of Yamal
150 - Птицы Белгородской области
136 - Birds of Nenets Птицы НАО
133 - Птицы Курганской области
123 - Птицы Марий Эл

271 - Birds of the Altai krai
239 - Птицы Нижегородской области
234 - Птицы Новосибирской области / Birds of Novosibirsk region
216 - Птицы Республика Алтай
215 - Птицы Москвы и Подмосковья
209 - Birds of Chuvashia
181 - Птицы Томской области
178 - Птицы Курской области
176 - Птицы Санкт-Петербурга и Ленинградской области
173 - Птицы Красноярского края
160 - Птицы Владимирской области | Birds of Vladimir region
154 - Птицы Республики Карелия | Birds of Karelia Republic
152 - Рязанский клуб Птицы | Birds of Ryazan
150 - Птицы Свердловской области
146 - Птицы Кировской области
136 - Птицы Волгоградской области
132 - Птицы Новгородской области / Birds of Novgorod Oblast
131 - Birds of Kamchatka region Птицы Камчатского края
109 - Птицы Ярославской области
107 - Птицы Удмуртской республики
93 - Птицы Марий Эл
71 - Birds of Nenets Птицы НАО
67 - Птицы Курганской области
60 - Птицы ЯНАО | Birds of Yamal
55 - Птицы Белгородской области


483 - Птицы Москвы и Подмосковья
246 - Птицы Санкт-Петербурга и Ленинградской области
83 - Birds of the Altai krai
48 - Птицы Новосибирской области / Birds of Novosibirsk region
46 - Птицы Республика Алтай
46 - Птицы Свердловской области
37 - Птицы Нижегородской области
33 - Птицы Владимирской области | Birds of Vladimir region
33 - Птицы Республики Карелия | Birds of Karelia Republic
31 - Птицы Красноярского края
29 - Birds of Chuvashia
25 - Птицы Волгоградской области
23 - Птицы Ярославской области
22 - Birds of Kamchatka region Птицы Камчатского края
19 - Птицы Новгородской области / Birds of Novgorod Oblast
18 - Рязанский клуб Птицы | Birds of Ryazan
15 - Птицы Томской области
13 - Птицы Марий Эл
12 - Птицы Кировской области
12 - Птицы Курской области
9 - Birds of Nenets Птицы НАО
8 - Птицы Белгородской области
8 - Птицы Курганской области
6 - Птицы ЯНАО | Birds of Yamal
5 - Птицы Удмуртской республики

Posted on November 20, 2019 06:55 by birdchuvashia birdchuvashia | 3 comments | Leave a comment
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We have liftoff....

Wow, with more iNatters out searching, the number of observations and number of buprestid species observed in SA have both rocketed in recent weeks. I did wonder if all the observations would come from the southern Mt Lofty Ranges but I'm pleased to see that there's quite a good scatter across SA, including some very interesting finds. Thanks must go to local researcher, Peter Lang, who has provided expert opinion and IDs to help things along. I've definitely learned a lot in recent weeks and, as anticipated, to be able to compare multiple observations, displaying local variation, has helped 'get my eye in' with the commoner species. The season isn't over yet so keep the observations coming!

Posted on November 20, 2019 05:18 by rfoster rfoster | 0 comments | Leave a comment

The Observations in this Project

The Observations in this Project are just some selected when it takes our fancy - or yours. Anyone can add an observation to this Project by selecting itin the Observation's "Projects" drop-down menu.

Posted on November 20, 2019 04:03 by kaipatiki_naturewatch kaipatiki_naturewatch | 0 comments | Leave a comment

The Observations in this Project

The Observations in this Project are just some selected when it takes our fancy - or yours. Anyone can add an observation to this Project by selecting itin the Observation's "Projects" drop-down menu.

Posted on November 20, 2019 04:02 by kaipatiki_naturewatch kaipatiki_naturewatch | 0 comments | Leave a comment

Observations in this Project

The Observations in this Project are just some selected when it takes our fancy - or yours. Anyone can add an observation to this Project by selecting itin the Observation's "Projects" drop-down menu.

Posted on November 20, 2019 04:01 by kaipatiki_naturewatch kaipatiki_naturewatch | 0 comments | Leave a comment

Observations in this Project

are just some selected when it takes our fancy - or yours. Anyone can add an observation to this Project by selecting itin the Observation's "Projects" drop-down menu.

Posted on November 20, 2019 03:59 by kaipatiki_naturewatch kaipatiki_naturewatch | 0 comments | Leave a comment

Observations in this Project

are just some selected when it takes our fancy - or yours. Anyone can add an observation to this Project by selecting itin the Observation's "Projects" drop-down menu.

Posted on November 20, 2019 03:58 by kaipatiki_naturewatch kaipatiki_naturewatch | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Thank You!!!

The BioBlitz was such a fun day, one that left me encouraged and excited about the professional prospects of the young Oregon State University students who participated in this event, volunteering their time, energy, and expertise! While weather and site conditions weren't optimal (too dry, too cloudy, too cool), they nevertheless maintained enthusiasm and a willingness to explore every nook and cranny at the site. You all are exemplary naturalists who will contribute in a big way to your chosen fields in science, and I thank you for all your contributions! I look forward to future opportunities to get together again.


Posted on November 20, 2019 00:01 by akreager akreager | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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New banner image!

I have updated the banner image on the Moths of Oklahoma project page with yet another caterpillar. This one is an Isabella Tiger Moth (Pyrrharctia isabella) observed by Bill Carrell (@arrowheadspiketail58) at Oxley Nature Center in Tulsa. Thanks for sharing this great observation, Bill!

We only have 3 iNat observations of this species within Oklahoma and all three are of caterpillars. Chances are good that this moth occurs throughout most of the state, although the available data suggests it is probably most common in the northeast part of the state. Looking at iNat's data, I see that there are two periods of time when caterpillars are seen: spring (April) and fall (August-November). There are fewer adult observations and mostly during the months of June and July. I wonder when and where someone will observe the first adult in Oklahoma.

Posted on November 19, 2019 21:12 by zdufran zdufran | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Tech Tip Tuesday: Improving Observation Quality

“Rain, rain, go away” is not a song I anticipated singing the week before Thanksgiving, yet here we are. I guess at this point, I shouldn’t be surprised. I can’t speak to how this weather compares to historic Vermont early-winters, but I know that winters are no longer normal. They say that anyone born during the past few decades has never experienced a true Vermont winter and I believe it. Even within the past few years this season has felt increasingly erratic. Just over the last two weeks I’ve seen single digits, mid-forties, pouring rain, and snow that clogged I-89 for miles. Although there is still some uncertainty surrounding the magnitude of climate change’s effects on Vermont, there’s little question in my mind that it’s disrupting winter’s “business as usual”.

Despite the indecisive weather, there’s still plenty to see! The new ground cover has increased my awareness of the diversity of life that I share the land with. Every morning a new row of deer tracks crisscross my yard and the delicate skips of mice are often seen tracing their way to and from my wood pile. I now know not only which animals are present, but also what areas they frequent most regularly. Although the November rain makes it tempting to stay indoors, I do encourage you to venture outdoors when the showers cease.

This Week on Tech Tip Tuesday

In the meantime, this dreary weather makes the perfect backdrop for indoor activities, such as iNaturalist housekeeping. Today I will go over a couple of basic tips for improving the quality of your iNaturalist observations. Quality is important when it comes to iNaturalist observations. Although the app’s goal is to collect data for scientists and others, only the research grade observations get stored where scientists can access them. This data storage program is the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF). Once an observation achieves research grade status, it gets sent to GBIF where it is stored with data from other programs. GBIF then provides open access to this data, making it available to anyone who needs it.

In order to help your observations achieve research grade and provide scientists with an accurate data point, I’ve outlined a couple tips to keep in mind when creating new observations and reviewing previously recorded ones.

Tip # 1: Make sure that your photo has a focus. I’m sure that you’d be hard pressed to find someone who doesn’t love a good landscape shot. However, your gorgeous photo of a forested hillside can prove tricky for iNaturalist. When your photo contains multiple species, both iNaturalist and other users can struggle to figure out which species you wanted identified. If you post a photo of a clump of trees and don’t specify which species you’re interested in, other users will struggle to help you make an identification. The easiest way to clearly indicate your focal species is by zooming in on it in your photo. If this is not possible, then provide an explanation in your observation’s comments section to help guide others towards the species of interest.

Tip #2: Make sure that your observation contains photos of only one species. While there are plenty of websites that encourage you to group photos of many different things, iNaturalist is not one of them. iNaturalist bases its identifications off of the first picture you upload. Therefore, if your first photo is of a grey squirrel and your second is of a mallard, the grey squirrel will get identified and cataloged while the mallard will remain hidden and unaccounted for. In order to ensure that the species you see are accurately represented, make sure that a new observation is made for each individual species. It is ok to reuse the same image and tag a different species. For more information on this, see TTT #2.

Tip #3: Try your best to provide an identification for your observation. Even if all you know is that you’re looking at a plant, animal, or fungi, write that down! If you identify something as unknown, others who might otherwise be able to assist may have a hard time finding it. “Unknown” observations are more likely to get lost in limbo waiting for someone to identify them. If you want help identifying your observation, labeling it as a “plant” will allow others to find it more easily.

Tip #4: Make sure that you mark captive animals and cultivated plants accordingly. There are few who scowl at a good pet picture. Personally, I’m usually a sucker for the artfully arranged garden as well. However, animals and plants that are raised and/or controlled by humans aren’t usually considered iNaturalist’s targeted biodiversity demographic. Discerning which animals and plants are considered captive and cultivated can be tricky at times. Thankfully, iNaturalist explains what they mean by “captive” or “cultivated”. If you do snap a photo of a captive animal or cultivated plant, make sure to select the “Captive/Cultivated” box below the date and location when adding your observation.

Tip #5: Make sure that your observation’s date is the date you observed it, not the date you uploaded it. Most of the time, iNaturalist will use the date that your phone stamped on the photo. However, if you’re using a photo that you took on a different device or that function is turned off on your fancy camera, you will have to input the date manually. Whenever you’re creating a new observation, check to make sure that the date is set to the day that you saw the animal/plant/fungi. If the date is wrong it will either make your photo “casual” grade or, if not caught, will provide inaccurate data to those who may use it in the future.

Tip #6: Make sure that your observations’ locations are correct. An easy way to do this is by going to your calendar (located in your profile icon’s drop down menu in the top right corner of your screen) for a specific day and click on the observations present. Once on the observations page, you can select “map” view and it will show you your observations’ locations for that day. If you notice any outliers, go directly to the questionable observation’s page for further evaluation. You can edit the location if needed to restore its accuracy.

TTT Task of the Week

For those who like to use these extra-wintery days for hunkering down and tackling indoor projects, this week’s task is for you! Revisit older observations you’ve made and check that all of the information in them is accurate and follows the tips outlined above. If you have hundreds or thousands of observations and understandably don’t want to go through all of them, then focus on ones that have yet to receive identifications. Use the observation map to double check that your observations show up in the correct location. I know that these housekeeping tasks can be tedious, however performing them from time to time ensures that your observations are contributing high quality data so that scientists like those with the Vermont Atlas of Life can use them to further conservation projects in Vermont.

If you would rather spend your time outside wandering the slushy landscape, then iNat your way around while practicing these tips.

Thank you for helping us map Vermont’s biodiversity and happy observing!

Posted on November 19, 2019 19:54 by emilyanderson2 emilyanderson2 | 4 comments | Leave a comment
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My Fair Lady Beetle - An Introduction to the Vermont Lady Beetle Atlas

Originally published by Kent McFarland.

Here at the Vermont Atlas of Life we're always on the lookout for historic biodiversity data. When we find it, our mission is to save it from potentially being lost in the dustbin of history. Recently, we unearthed a 43 year old document - Lady Beetles: A Checklist of the Coccinellidae of Vermont. The authors listed the first and last date each species was collected in Vermont and the total number of specimens known, a snapshot of Lady Beetle life in Vermont prior to 1976.

Since at least the 1980s, native Lady Beetles that were once very common across the Northeast have become rare or have even gone missing. But there was little information readily available from Vermont. Spurred on by this old document, we began to assemble as much data as possible. First, we digitized 201 records covering 37 species reported in the historic document. We added 185 Vermont records from the Lost Ladybug Project and uploaded them to the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) through the Vermont Atlas of Life IPT server. This is coupled with over 400 verified photo-observations comprising 20 Lady Beetle species that community naturalists have reported to the Vermont Atlas of Life on iNaturalist that are also shared with GBIF.

These datasets join other records at GBIF, where there are now 865 records representing 40 lady beetle species (seven introduced) available for use. Uniting Vermont data, stored in locations far and wide, shows the power of a data gathering infrastructure like the Vermont Atlas of Life and GBIF.

Most records come from Vermont Atlas of Life iNaturalist users contributing photographs of these beetles. In 2018 alone, 13 verified species were documented from 128 observations. And observers have contributed some unique Vermont records to crowd-sourced databases:

- Undoubtable Lady Beetle (Brachiacantha indubitabilis) – the first and only state record was found in 2014 and reported to
- Hieroglyphic Lady Beetle (Coccinella hieroglyphica kirbyi) – the last record in Vermont was reported in 1969 until one was reported to VAL on iNaturalist in 2017.
- Mountain Lady Beetle (Coccinella monticola) – the first and only state record was reported to VAL on iNaturalist in 2017.

Lady beetles, aka ladybugs, are adored by many. But they are also important for farmers. Many species eat plant pests like aphids, scale insects, and mealybugs-- which can be serious pests of trees, vegetables, and flowers. Lady beetles lay hundreds of eggs and when they hatch, the larvae immediately begin to feed. Several species are even collected and sold to growers for control of insect pests.

The Missing Lady Beetles in Vermont

What species are we missing now? Fourteen of the 34 native species known from Vermont have not been reported since the 1976 checklist was completed. Three of these species were designated as "species of greatest conservation need" in 2015 in New York: Two-spotted Lady Beetle (Adalia bipunctata), Nine-spotted Lady Beetle (Coccinella novemnotata), and Transverse Lady Beetle (C. transversoguttata). And the Nine-spotted Lady Beetle  was recently declared "Endangered" in Canada.

An extensive USDA APHIS survey in 1993 failed to find any Nine-spotted Lady Beetles in 11 Northeastern states, including Vermont. Both the Two-spotted and the Nine-spotted lady beetles were both thought to be extinct in New York until citizen scientists rallied to help Cornell University Lost Ladybug Project search for them. In 2009 the Two-spotted was reported from western New York and in 2011 several Nine-spotted lady beetles were spotted by citizen scientists on Long Island.

Help Us Find Vermont's Missing Lady Beetles

This year, we hope you’ll search for Lady Beetles near you and report them to the Vermont Atlas of Life on iNaturalist. The Discover Life pictorial key is a resource that can help you identify them, but no experience is necessary! Just find them, photograph them, and add them to the Vermont Lady Beetle Atlas, even if you don't know what species you found. Maybe you'll be the lucky person to find one of our missing lady beetles!

Posted on November 19, 2019 19:26 by emilyanderson2 emilyanderson2 | 0 comments | Leave a comment

Lebanon - iNaturalist World Tour

It's Week 22 of the iNaturalist World Tour. This week we'll visit. Lebanon in the Mediterranean region, three islands: Christmas Island in the Indian Ocean, Cook Islands in the South Pacific, and Aruba in the Caribbean. And three countries in Africa: Rwanda, Burkina Faso, and Gabon.

We begin in Lebanon. Lebanon is located with Israel to the south and Syria to the north and east. The top 10 observers are @epopov, @pintail, @subhashc, @marcelfinlay, @supergan, @rhabdornis, @jorgejuanrueda, @tzmyanmar1, @seasav, and @bryanjbd.

The number of observations per month jumped up in 2019.

The top 5 identifiers are @sethmiller, @rajibmaulick, @kokhuitan, @subirshakya, and @briangooding

What can we do to improve iNaturalist in Lebanon? Please share your thoughts below.

@mohammadm @mortdork @vmoser @eli_talh @skyrk @ronf @fragmansapir @ariel-shamir @cliygh-and-mia @sammyboy2059

Next stop is Christmas Island!

Posted on November 19, 2019 18:28 by loarie loarie | 1 comments | Leave a comment