iNat has a low number of fish records compared to most vertebrate observations.
I’m extremely new to the hobby of microfishing and already I have the most fish species in my state (Illinois). On the one hand, it’s something to brag about, but on the other hand I am new and barely know my IDs as of yet. I should NOT be on top for my state, given the number of fish species and amount of fishing that goes on in Illinois.
Fishing is one of the most popular outdoor activities in the world, and that’s not reflected at all on iNat, which has less than 254,000 Ray-finned Fish observations and less than 7800 species (out of the about 40,000 in the world). For comparison, iNaturalist has approximately 379,000 Odonata observations and around 2300 species (out of about 5,000 species). This seems imbalanced given the popularity of fishing over dragonflies. Obviously, dragonflies can be easier to spot than fish, but at the same time, with the amount of money and time spent on fishing or diving across the globe, iNaturalist should have many more observations of fish.
So, the question I ask become two-parted. How do we get people already engaged in fishing to report their observations on iNaturalist? And how do we promote looking for fish to people who already use iNaturalist?