I'm getting a message about photo size being too big

Please fill out the following sections to the best of your ability, it will help us investigate bugs if we have this information at the outset. Screenshots are especially helpful, so please provide those if you can.

Platform (Android, iOS, Website): Website

App version number, if a mobile app issue (shown under Settings or About): Not Applicable

Browser, if a website issue (Firefox, Chrome, etc) : Microsoft Edge

URLs (aka web addresses) of any relevant observations or pages:

Screenshots of what you are seeing (instructions for taking a screenshot on computers and mobile devices: https://www.take-a-screenshot.org/):

Description of problem (please provide a set of steps we can use to replicate the issue, and make as many as you need.):

Step 1: Message received: "There were some problems with these files:


  • File must be less than 20 MB

If your photo files are too big, try cropping them down to a maximum of 2048 by 2048 pixels. This will happen to all photos on the server anyway, and will make for a faster upload."

Step 2:

Step 3:

How big is IMG_2268.JPG?


Cropping may cut off some potential useful details in the photo. Best resize them, I find 2000px longest end on either side (length/height) is sufficient for most viewing. Dropping down DPI to like 72-95 dpi also can reduce the filesize a lot, higher dpi only needed for printing. There are many online web based version to help reduce image filesize if you do not have any app for it. I’m using Windows version Photoscape to resize all the time. Android snapseed also one of the app that can help resize the image.

Depends on the photo. In many observations the subject takes up only a small section of the image, and cropping is highly desirable. Resizing without cropping can make the subject unidentifiable.


Unless your image meets the required dimensions and you are getting this message despite that, this is not a bug.

iNat has limited storage space, so images sizes (both dimensions and memory) have had upper limits on them for a long time now.


Agreed. So I put “may”.

Welcome to the iNat forum!

I would definitely recommend cropping strategically rather than/before resizing (sometimes one may need to do both), as high resolution is often most useful for IDing key characters. Also, dpi doesn’t matter for web display, just printing. You can just focus on the max pixel dimensions ( 2048 by 2048) that iNat accepts.


If this is the wording of the error message, it should be revised, shouldn’t it? The system does not crop images to 2048x2048, it resizes them down.

Apologies everyone, I should have clarified: I always upload images from my camera and iNat has never had an issue with it before.

It appears to be accepting my photos at the size I normally upload them again today.

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