Journal archives for October 2017

October 03, 2017

iNatting from Airports and Airplanes!

Hello Fellow iNatters!

Many of you are like me and absolutely nuts with iNaturalist, as I have noted from your many observations! I don't know about you, but my mind is almost always on what organisms can be noted and were, regardless of where I find myself - even when nature is hard to come by. At the mall with the family, at the theme park, at the baseball game, the office, and so on, but what about the airport and from INSIDE the airplane?

Recently I have started documenting these observations, almost as a game, to see what I can see from the various airports across the country and internationally. It is some fun! On that layover between your home and final destination, you may be able to see things you won't see in either place. Why not document them? Most airports are well-equipped with large windows allowing you to see whatever exists outside from a 360 degree vantage point. I like to take advantage when possible. Of course, on nighttime or tight layovers or when there just isn't much to see outside, those can be tough.

A selection of my airport/airplane observations are included in this post. Some of the more interesting observations include Bat Falcon and a Jumping Spider in Panama's Tocumen International, Florida Royal Palm and Beach She-oak in Miami International, the rare Purple Desert Lupine and Ives' Phacelia on Borrego Valley Airport property, the Amazon River from the plane, etc. I have even started photographing aerial shots from the plane window mid-flight and submitting them as "Plants". With those international flights, you can photo the image shown on the onboard TV monitor that shows your current position and then later match your specific position using Google Earth. Those "Plants" observations have much less value than shots from the ground since they are not species specific, but are fun nonetheless. I'll try to review my various other observations and photos from the past and add them here in time. Some additional older airport observations:

Bat Falcon, Tocumen International, Panama
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/1172706
Jumping Spider, Tocumen International, Panama
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/490456
Surf Scoter, San Diego International
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/2557385
Common Loon, San Diego International
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/2557382

Before I carried a camera, I recall so many interesting airport observations I wish I had documented. Years ago on one layover on my way to South America at Panama's Tocumen International Airport, I saw two species of parrots, Magnificent Frigatebirds, other assorted bird species and most amazingly, a migration kettle of hundreds of Swainson's and Broad-winged Hawks circling overhead. On another layover in Buenos Aires, Argentina, multiple Fork-tailed Flycatchers on the wires. If only I had photographed all of those...

To me, photographing observations from airports and airplanes is just one more way to contribute to the iNaturalist database and citizen science in general. I hope you agree and give it a shot. Have fun!

Jay

Posted on October 03, 2017 01:02 by jaykeller jaykeller | 16 observations | 6 comments | Leave a comment

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