How many followers do you have on iNat?

I have 0 followers on iNat probably because of my extremely low amount of observations (33) or they just find me annoying. does anyone have an extremely low amount of observations and 0 followers?

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A lot of people don’t really do the following thing. A lot of people have many observations and still have no followers. It doesn’t really mean that much, in my opinion. So, I wouldn’t worry about not having a following. And I highly doubt anybody finds you annoying. You seem very pleasant! Your observations are going to be appreciated regardless of if you have followers. I can’t tell you the last time I looked at who is following me because it’s not something that impacts my experience on the site very much.

It’s a handy feature to use to be able to find people quickly, which is what I use it for. If somebody offers to help me in the future, I follow them so I can find them easily if I want to follow them up on their offer.


I try not to follow high volume users, because they fill up my dashboard too much. Other than that, it’s usually “set it and forget it.”


Unless you have a friend that also happens to be on iNat, the only reasons one would want to follow someone else is because they post informative journal entries (like local bioblitz announcements) or post lots of observations of species that one is particularly interested in.

I have no idea how many followers I have…never thought to look!


There isn’t much purpose on inaturalist to “follow” people - all it does is send you a notification whenever they observe something. As an identifier there is no reason to limit your ids to the observations of a group of persons you follow though - if they are in the area you’re watching you get to each of their observations anyway.

And as an observer, say you want to be notified when someone sees a species you want to see yourself close to where you live - it again makes more sense to just watch for any observations of the species, rather than limit to a few people you follow.

The only reason I can see to follow is people I already know so I can be the first to talk to them about the things they just found… :slightly_smiling_face:


I mostly just follow people who I know in real life (friends, acquaintances, or college professors), people whose work I’m very familiar with, people who regularly post interesting observations (i.e. living in a biodiversity hotspot and regularly reporting species that are otherwise poorly-documented on here), and a few users who I’ve had rather positive interactions with. Some of them also follow me back. And that’s really it.


I don’t even care about the followers aspect of iNaturalist. When you follow someone you just see updates of their iNat activities in your main page. Sometimes I will follow people who I know in the flesh, but other than that it is one bit of the site that I barely pay any attention to anymore.

Edit: @acacia-lizards did you delete your inat profile? or is there an error in the link?

I’ve noticed I get followers mostly out of identifying a lot of things. People see a few IDs from me and decide to follow me. I agree with the above that most iNat users don’t really seem to follow other people much, although I have accumulated a group of followers by now and appreciate them, especially those who frequently identify my stuff.

Myself, I mostly have followed people who I know offline (e.g. colleagues, students, friends, family…) and some who have begged me to look at their observations for IDs. However, there doesn’t seem to be the same reciprocation (I follow you if you follow me) that exists in other social media.

That said, there are other types of ‘follows’ you can set up. Personally, I follow (subscribed to) a number of places that I keep an eye on for identifications, and have joined a few projects so I get journal updates. I know others have their favorite taxa and follow those for identifications.

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Maybe renamed so the old link goes nowhere now?

Same reasons I follow people

I only follow 9 people as of late. Most of which are locals. I follow them just to see what they find around my state and quickly offer IDs of my own if I can.

I follow people for 2 reasons. Either they’re someone I know who is making observations in an area I’m interested in or because they focus on a particular taxa that I’m interested in.

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only nine? I follow zero people because I just don’t find that I need to.


There should be a reason to follow you, as you said, you didn’t post enough or probably didn’t get noticed by people who would follow you. I disagree with anyone saying it doesn’t matter, it does for those who choose to follow a person, I follow 63 users, those are good observers, iders, ppl I talked with, ppl from places I’m interested in, plus relatives and friends irl. I have 318 followers and had no idea there’re so many, so I don’t fit the person you’re looking for, but I’m sure it’s a logical fact that people with low amount of obs & ids will likely not have any followers.
@robotpie their account is


I follow 43 people, mostly either folks I’ve met in real life, or people who regularly post unusual organisms I’m interested in, or people I want to be able to put on my “trusted” list so they can see coordinates of obscured observations I post. Or people I want to tag sometimes who have difficult-to-spell usernames. It’s more convenient than writing it down somewhere.

I have 492 followers, I’m not quite sure why. I’m pretty sure anyone who follows me is constantly getting their dashboard clogged up with a million observations, but perhaps they enjoy that?


I can tell for sure that the number of followers on iNat does not mean anything. Apparently most users follow real friends or helpful identifiers they might want to mention later or anyone who seems to be interesting among others.
However, because almost all iNat users share interest in nature, many people seem to find following function unimportant.
So many respected big users have a little numbers of followers for example.
For your information I have 143 followers for being an extremely active user for nearly 3 years (and I follow more than 300 people, mainly related to my big projects).

Same, but I also add people who do really pretty pictures.


Depends on how one understands the meaning of “following” on iNat. Some understand as in Facebook (won’t discuss on that). I follow some people who help me with my identifications (I can repay them in IDing theirs fast, seeing notifications of their OBs) and observe things from which I can learn (meaning organism groups that I have not enough knowledge though not a total ignoramus). Also I follow people whom I know - in trade, mainly.


iNat is not big on followership like Twitter, Instagram or TikTok, because it is a niche app.

But if you’re interested in garnering interest of users, here are a few tips which all border around adding value.

#1. Your observations should be quality, over quantity.
There is no general rule to how often users should post, but moderate observation uploads encourage the average user to view and engage. And give a follow.
Users with many observations uploaded all at once, every now and then, are likely to be unfollowed quickly, because that is overwhelming in terms of frequency and content of notification emails. Follow those you can handle, offer ID help, and actually interested in their observations.

#2. Take quality photos of observations
Take photography lessons if you have to.
Use a decent camera.
Edit your photos - crop, color correct, sharpen…
Also, take multiple and interesting angles of subjects that permit it. This facilitates faster and accurate identification.
PS. There are high value observations, which due to field constraints, lack quality photos. Imagine a fleeting rare bird which is only accounted for by a blurry shot (record shot). This is still OK. With preparation and subsequent encounters record shots are improved upon.

#3. Leave no observation of yours unlabelled.
ID all of them to, at least, general level.
Add geo-location, tags, date, etc.
This portrays you as an active or experienced user.

#4. Engage the observations of others
Visit the Explore page of your region to provide ID to random observations. Offer opinions to help find correct IDs. Make relevant comments. Compliment good photos too.
This can endear you to users and make you worthy of a follow.
After discovery, users with similar interests as yourself are likely to follow you, and you may reciprocate as a courtesy.
Engaging observations on Explore pages of other regions other than yours grants learning opportunities and exposure.

#5. Fill up your profile. Don’t leave it blank. Users have better reason to follow you when they have an clear idea of who you are in the real world.

In the end, please don’t lose sight of the objective of the platform, which is citizen science. Connection follows next.


Makes me wonder why they asked the question to begin with. Not needing to is definitely a good reason to not do something.