Life List Firsts - how to debug?

I really like the life list firsts feature on the iNaturalist calendar page. I love to go to a new place, upload my observations, and marvel at not just the new species I may have observed, but whole new Families and Orders that I have become acquainted with.

iNat does an amazing job tracking and presenting this with the Life List Firsts feature. It’s occasionally buggy. The example that I found today, was my observations of Red Ribbon Worm (Tubulanus polymorphus). I’ve observed it four times, and iNat has consequently presented the following Life List Firsts:

Any ideas on why the Order keeps getting counted as a Life List First?

And secondly, @tiwane had responded to a 2019 forum post with advice on what to try when Life List Firsts seems like it’s bugging out. Basically, there used to be a button/tool to re-load life lists from observations. I don’t think that tool exists anymore? What’s the current advice on how to try to debug the Life List Firsts feature?


In this case, there was an indexing problem with Tubulaniformes. There must have been a taxon change at some point. For some reason your older observations which are now in Tubulaniformes didn’t have Tubulaniformes in their ancestry, and this was confusing the queries we use to look up life lists firsts from the calendar. I’ve re-indexed all observations of Nemertea, and this issue appears to be resolved now.

The “life list firsts” on the calendar page no longer have any connection with lists, which were prone to becoming stale and out-of-sync with actual observations. In theory there should be no need to “refresh” anything as the data is coming directly from observations and not using lists. There is likely a lingering where all observations aren’t being re-indexed properly after some taxon changes. If you notice this issue with other taxa, please let us know and we’ll look into it. It should hopefully be pretty rare, and if we can track down and fix indexing bugs around taxon changes, it shouldn’t happen at all.

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Cool, thank you and will do if I see another reindexing issue.

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