Let's Talk Annotations

What phylum is it?

Should be retained.


Sorry just noticing this now. I’m a little off grid. I’ll have to look back and try to figure out what I was looking at. I’ll get back to you.

Hello everyone, I would be interested in seeing a new annotation under “Evidence of Presence” for animals a “Nest” (or a better word to allow a more general description) option especially for animals such as wasps, bees and birds as currently those observations don’t fall under any “Evidence for Presence” but I often see users mark them as “Tracks” or “Molt” which the observations are neither.


apparently we are supposed to use ‘tracks’ for the other evidence

Are we? When I looked at the definition of tracks it says “footprints in dirt or snow”. If it is to be included then would it be possible to change the definition to clarify that other things such as hair, nests, est can be included in that category .

If you check, nest was asked to be added before, and yes, ppl shouldn’t use “tracks” for that.

Somewhere in this long thread that was said - use tracks for all the other evidence of presence.

I’m pretty sure it was said never to use tracks for something that doesn’t fit description of the field.


Thanks, for letting me know everyone.

What about a gall, or a feeding mark? We may not be able to identify exactly what species produced it, but is a swollen gall, chewn leaf, or scratched trunk evidence?

from https://forum.inaturalist.org/t/what-is-evidence/470/60

Galls are available as annotation.

That was an August 2021 comment (not mine)
Gall is one of the newer annotations?

Someone has probably mentioned this and I will go through again and look at the other topics, but…

I noticed under annotations / Life Stage that there are only Adult, egg, and Juvenile for birds. But many birds, even hatching year (HY) are past the juvenile stage and are actually Immature birds. Most of the time, Juvenile is only used for birds right out of the nest and certainly not for birds in their second year (SY) or after hatching year (AHY). For example, some gulls and hawks may take more than one year to become an adult.

Can we get “Immature” added as a life stage to the list of Annotations for birds?

I’m not comfortable using Juvenile for sub-adults (although I guess I could if there is no other choice), especially for HY birds that pretty much look like adults and are getting ready to migrate, but aren’t quite adults yet.

Thank you for your consideration.


I moved your post to this existing topic. If you search within it, you can see some previous related discussion.


I 100% agree and the addition of “immature” is included in the table posted by @jwidness for bird life stage with no issues currently listed.

If/when this change is made, I will have to revisit a lot of my annotations for Rallidae. I’ve been using “juvenile” for lack of better options.


Thank you @jwidness and @swampster . I thought there might have already been this suggestion so I appreciate my thread being moved to the right spot.

And I really hope they add immature as I am reluctant to assign juvenile to some of my observations even if the birds are obviously hatching year and not quite adults yet.

Thank you.

Yes. They have a similar (pretty much exactly) system already in use on eBird so I think a lot of birders are already familiar with it and would be pleased to be able to add that information.

1 Like

I also would like to see immature added. It is useful for birds.

It is also fairly well used. EBird uses: juvenile, immature, and adult for their annotations and there are decent explanations. So I really want the option of immature added, especially for birds like gulls and hawks (and all the others) that go through several molts before attaining adult appearance.

Although I would like it, I would love a field for hatching year (HY), after hatching year (AHY), second year (SY) and so on but that is asking too much I think. :slightly_smiling_face:

Anyway, I hope they can add immature to the list.

What groups that is used for? I never heard of a system with hatching years, it’s usually calendar years http://www.gull-research.org/hg/0start.html or life years.

The HY, AHY, etc is used when banding birds so I got used to it when i was involved in that. I only mentioned it because I have actually been indicating hatching year HY in the notes area of some of my observations for passerines that are not in full adult plumage but are not juveniles either and which I would have used the immature annotation if there was one.

It’s useful to me at least and helps identify the age of the bird fairly clearly. In fact it’s a little easier and clearer than juvenile or immature since it simply means a bird that was hatched this year/season, ie for HY. So there is no quibbling about molts and if the bird is in the process of molting, etc.

HY would cover the Wood Thrush I saw recently that had mostly gone through its first molt but still had feathers erupting on the shoulder and there were downy feathers in the undertail coverts and it still had traces of a fleshy gape. Definitely HY.

Hope that makes sense.