Include "identification comments" in total # of comments, comment search, etc

Text attached to an identification is not shown in an observation’s total number of comments. These “ID comments” do not appear on the Explore page, the “Edit observations” page, or when searching comments.

This is frustrating when trying to find a specific observation, like when a helpful identifier described how two similar species are different, but they attached the text to the ID instead of putting it in a separate comment.

It would be really helpful if ID comments were included in the total number of comments, comment search, and recent comment list. Other nice places for ID comments to be included would be in the observation filters (add a search for comments) and on /identifications (search for certain IDs based on having comments attached).

Previous related feature requests and discussions

Especially since the process invites attaching the comment re identification to the ID.


I’d like to heart but don’t see one on the original post - from your list of prior notes, it would seem that there is some pent-up demand. I wonder how hard it would be.

You can’t “like” (heart) a Feature Request, but you can vote for it.


Definitely a needed feature. We have a sort of interesting taxonomic issue within a species of paper wasps (a species with two forms is being re-evaluated as potentially two different species). I’ve noted form differences here in comments (in a way that would be easily searchable) as there’s an additional issue as to the proper name to apply to the form / species. The research is still ongoing but is looking like a split will eventually be necessary. Being able to search these comments attached to IDs would make that a much cleaner process whenever the paper makes it to publication.


What species, out of curiosity?

It’s a US species, Polistes apachus, with the second species tentatively denoted as Polistes texanus in certain circles.

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I’m sorry if this is not the best place to post this …

I added a vote for this feature request. I’d like to be able to do a search for all lady beetle observations where the comments include the word Dinocampus, which is a parasitoid of lady beetles that often gets photographed with the beetle but not noticed by the original observer. So far I can only figure out how to do the search so that observations with the word in the description show up, but that depends on the observer having both noticed it and knowing what it is. It would be very useful to not only be able to search regular comments but also comments under identifications - I know I have added comments about Dinocampus under my identifcations, and I’m sure others have too.


You can search all comments (rather than just comments on obs of a specific taxon) for a term, not sure if it includes ID comments but otherwise I think it should work:
I requested better comment search functionality here.


it doesn’t


Just giving this topic a bump:
In the recent cryptid topic I went searching for observations where I knew I’d left a comment containing “artwork”.
I didn’t get any results, unfortunately, because I’d left those comments inside my “Human” identification, and we can’t search comments inside IDs - even though, as @sgene stated, the comment field and “Tell us why…” in IDs encourages us to leave comments in our IDs.


I came to the forum today to make the request that a tab for “Comments” be added to user profiles.

This would function in the same way as you click through to the history of a user’s “Observations” and “Identifications” and perhaps would also encourage people to get involved in discussions via comments.

Another reason: Sometimes I remember who made the comment but not on what observation, and not only was it not my observation, but I never was in the conversation so I have no notifications of it to use to find it again!

Also, I have begun using comments as a way to suggest IDs in a less-confident way when I need to do research later, decreasing the chance it is confirmed and then I forget to return to research more. It would be nice if I could look through a list of all my comments at some point and search them as a ‘text’.

As far as I can tell, that is what is being requested here. So I’ve voted for it and can explain further to anyone who has questions my rationale for wanting this feature.

For my purposes this feature would need to include both comments made as plain comments and those made along with a suggested ID.

Edit to add: I went to see upupa-epops’s posted links to how to search comments and found the which has been very helpful. However, I do think this feature could be made more visible (as it would be with a link on each user’s profile next to Observations and Identifications) and would be nice to have for other users, not just me.

Same for maybe even adding a Comments tab or very visible link on each taxa page? I know these things may be far more difficult to implement than I realize, so I have a lot of patience for that, but still assume it is better to make the suggestion than not.


We won’t be doing this as we consider “identification comments” to be not the same as standard “comments”. is also not something we plan to develop further, at least in this current incarnation.

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