A general request for more people to make videos of what they observe

Hello everyone, I would just like to make a general request for more people to record videos of what they are observing, and share to youtube or even the Internet Archive! There’s a lot of species that don’t have any videos showing them, and if more people started making videos, even ones without any narration, it would help a lot more people be able to learn about the species.

My twin and I run the youtube challen “Twins Gardening”, which is less about gardening at this point and more just a mish mash of every video mostly I decide to make. Including tons of short videos of animals I see and plant identification videos.

All of my wildlife videos are public domain because I say so (so are all my observation photos), because I want to help more people learn. I’ve also started uploading them to the Internet Archive.

Doesn’t matter how rare or common the species you’re looking at is, a video will absolutely be welcome! Especially if you’re able to make a video about how to identify the species and other information like that!

You don’t have to be a proffessional to upload videos to youtube, you don’t even have to edit them in any way or have a title card or anything like that.

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I’ve started doing the same and must say, I enjoy shooting short videos a lot more than just taking photos. Videos show behavioral elements which are difficult to capture in photos. And it also lets you take your eye off the camera to observe things around you with your own eyes while the camera is rolling. Moreover, it needs a lot of patience and is often therapeutic for me.

Here’s my short playlist. I hope that I’ll be able to keep adding to this.

https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLMU6mwo_RK9lFxuAX8igArgbuxBNgDnOl&feature=shared

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Thanks for making this post and for uploading videos! I agree that it’s a very valuable endeavour, when I was first getting serious about insects and spiders I would always try to look up videos so I could see their behavior and learn about them.

For anyone wanting to watch educational videos about spiders, I strongly recommend Travis McEnery’s channel, which has high-quality videos that even domain experts can learn from. There are several other channels I watch, including some run by iNatters who post screenshots of their wildlife videos to iNaturalist (mostly bees, but a wide variety of other thing as well). The channel Lillie Gibb has a lot of great videos that are linked to iNat observations.

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Are you linking your videos in your post as a comment?

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I just tried to upload a .mov file and couldn’t figure out how. My iPhone does so much clearer zoom ins in video than photo. Is there a trick?

I fully agree on the value of videos, not only for identification purposes but also to learn more about behaviour. I have trained my self to make videoclips along photographs, and have uploaded more than 2800 clips to my youtube channel. Please feel free to visit my channel and make comments if you like. My channel is: https://www.youtube.com/@Tom-in-nature.

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iNat doesn’t allow video upload for observations. If you have a video related to an observation, you can upload it to a video hosting site (like Youtube, etc.) and then post the link in notes or a comment. Some gifs are also unofficially supported. You’ll sometimes see those, but support for them may not continue in the future, so I don’t recommend using them.

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Nice to see you here again.

What I would prefer, rather than have my own YouTube channel (which would create bothersome feelings of obligation, “I’d better get cracking on creating more content”), is to be part of a group of naturalists with a shared channel. That way, I would still have a platform for videos but without the sole burden of upkeep.

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I agree with that idea. On my own my stuff would be random and rather… lost

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Unfortunately, video files take up a significant amount of space compared to photos. So, websites like iNat (and eBird) can’t really accept them. But, I agree that they are sometimes better than photos especially when you are trying to record behavior.

I have sometimes taken a video with my camera and then taken screenshots of parts of it for reporting to eBird. You have a better chance of capturing flying birds in a video especially if you have an inexpensive camera.

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You can use the free VLC app to convert MOV files to MP3.

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a YouTube channel doesn’t need to be an obligation – everyone who has a Google account automatically has a YouTube channel, and you can use it as you wish (as a dumping ground for random videos, for example.) Honestly, the vast majority of YouTube channels are exactly that – either empty, or having a handful of random videos not intended to reach a wider audience. You can even keep your videos “unlisted”, meaning they’re only accessible via direct link.

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I did not know that!!!

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I document video whenever possible (https://www.youtube.com/@imsomewheretoday). It does help in showing clearer picture of the behavioural as well as audio.

I also have a youtube channel where I infrequently upload videos about me just taking nature walks or highlighting specific species. I haven’t been as active as I’d like but I plan on starting more this summer. I have one old one I still need to upload. There will obviously be mistakes in my videos as I am a novice still, and my ID’s in the field aren’t perfect, but that will get better as time goes on. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdCJjlaozP9Atq_LzZtnsFg

Edit: I will start providing the links to the iNat observations of taxa in my videos in the description, or as a comment after the fact.

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I’m pretty sure you can’t upload videos to iNat. You can do animated gifs though. Here’s a little collection of them : https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/animated-observations

And I think this is a pretty cool idea even if you can’t iNat them. Maybe link them in your profile? It’s not really my kind of thing but there’s a biologist local to me who has done some ID videos that really helped me learn to distinguish between a few species of plants that always tripped me up. https://www.youtube.com/@erinbergman6710

Not to poop the party but what about the energy/material consumption needed to increase the production, storage and dissemination of videos? what are the recent figures like? is there really an urgent need?

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BIRDRAGHU- Yes, I fully agree with u. Basically I’m a Wildlife Videographer. Anybody interested watching interesting behavior of Animals/Birds/Reptiles of India, may watch the short vids in my Youtube channel which can be searched out by simply typing birdraghu in Google or clicking the following link
https://www.youtube.com/@birdraghu

Videos are lower resolution. Maybe it helps for some groups (obviously not for plants or fungi!). And most insects move too fast to see properly and if you freeze frame there’s no detail. When people post videos for id on FaceBook I just ignore them. So please don’t.

You’re talking about ID training videos which are completely different from a few seconds of record video.