My First Journal Post

Hi, my name is Emily and I've been a member on iNaturalist for almost a year now. I learned about this great resource from a coworker who also shares an admiration for the outdoors. Initially after downloading the app I recorded a couple of observations, but then life got busy and I forgot I even had it for awhile.

Since we've been encouraged to practice social distancing during the COVID-19 outbreak, I rediscovered the app on my phone and decided it's a good time to take my observations a little more seriously. I've started my own project, Fort Smallwood Park Biodiversity 2020, in attempt to fill my time away from work with something I enjoy doing. Upon creating the project, I was very happy to see a number of observations already recorded from other members that fit the criteria for the project. I hope to see the collection build as more naturalists record their findings.

My boyfriend and I have ambitions to do more camping this year and I look forward to adding to my own personal collection. I'm still fairly new to the program, so any tips, tricks, suggestions are greatly appreciated.

As my boyfriend and I plan for our next camping trip, I would like to put together an area specific list of species that are at their population peaks during this time of year. Does anyone have suggestions on how to best collect and compile that data using this app? Again, any information is greatly appreciated.

Hope everyone is staying safe and healthy, and still enjoying the outdoors!

-Em

Posted by ehall1994 ehall1994, March 26, 2020 14:13

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Hi Emily! Great that you're using iNaturalist to collect some data (and engage with nature, of course). I've really enjoyed using the tool, and I've gained so much knowledge from learning the names of all of the critters and plants all around me.

One super important thing to remember is that the app is GREAT for collecting data, but it's the website that you have to go to really explore it. You can search the various locations where you and your boyfriend will go camping, and seek out some of the organisms that would be new for you (or new to the area -- not yet observed in iNat). For instance, when I do a search for the observations of Anne Arundel County, I get loads of results:
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations?place_id=1818

I then filter down to... say... beetles of Anne Arundel County:
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations?place_id=1818&subview=grid&taxon_id=47208&view=species

I've filtered down a 'digitial field guide' to the beetles of the area. As you find a spot that you're interested in camping or exploring, see what's been observed out there before -- it's a fun way to look for the existing species but also add to the species list of the area. :)

Most of all, have fun engaging with nature! iNat had changed the way that I interact with nature, and it's wonderful. :)

Posted by sambiology 4 months ago (Flag)
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Thanks Sam, this information was definitely helpful!

Posted by ehall1994 4 months ago (Flag)

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