Live Wildlife Cam Observations


I’m new here. I really love the fact that anyone [with a PC] cam help researchers.

I would like to help too, and I have some knowledge about wildlife, especially the wildlife that can be found in my country; Romania.

However, being disabled, it is quite difficult for me to get out in the field.

I do watch plenty of wildlife live cams, though, many of which show animals that live in my country.

So is it unethical to post observations, that you made, from watching live Cams?

Also, a slightly different topics: If the observed species is an Animal, can an observation be, just finding a track of the Animal? [Tracking Is something, that I could manage to do]

I will leave the wildlife cam question to others, as there is no clear consensus on it.

Submitting tracks (or any other evidence of wildlife such as nests, burrows, scat etc) is perfectly fine, and is encouraged.

For example :

Are these life wildlife cans yours? At that point it is fine to post images of the observations you made. There are a lot of camera trap observations on iNaturalist.

If these are not you own cameras I guess this would be slightly different.
For one if the live stream is publicly available someone else could potentially make the same observation as you. I could be that whoever set up the camera has some sort of copy write on the images taken. (the observation itself would not have a copy write in my opinion, but if you cannot add images to it an iNat observation would stay casual).
If the cameras are setup by a organisation or such, you may simply want to contact them and propose helping them to record these observations to iNaturalist. Maybe they are happy with some help.

Hope you’ll find a way to participate.

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I thought about this myself. I’m not necessarily sure that this is an issue. It seems like the same situation as if two people posted an observation of the same organism in person (ie, each took a photo at a similar time, through an observation window). My main concern would be around copyright laws, and whether content produced by live cams is bound by copyright laws (I would say it would be in most jurisdictions). This would probably be solved by a simple email, as I can’t imagine most operators would object (although they may want attribution)

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Thanks. I guess, I will manage

I am really a noob to copyright/copyrighting, but I wouldn’t use any images taken from their live Cameras, and I know that adding pictures to your observations is encouraged, but can’t one create an observation here on iNaturalist, without adding a photo, in certain circumstances, like this one? Sorry for the silly questions, but I just started out with iNaturalist…

If you can be sure of the date, place and identification, then I can’t see any problem with making an observation of it. The spirit of iNat, however, is to document and discuss what you personally encounter. I appreciate you may have limitations on how much you can interact, but we all have that to some varying degree. I for one need a boat! Oh, and scuba gear… but I get as much fun out of documenting the bugs and critters that turn up in my back yard, and don’t get me started on psocids that I find on the walls inside my house!

Actually, the more I think about it, if live cams are how you interact with nature, then it really is within the spirit of iNat!

Hi @botiandrsi

I am new to inaturalist too, and one of the things that seems to be very important to the community is the work of identifying existing observations. With your knowledge, you can help identify observations that others have submitted so that they can become research grade. Here is a link to current observations in your country, for example. (on the home iNanturalist page I clicked explore, and typed in Romania under the location box). You can further filter the results based on your interest, such as a specific city or taxa like birds or plants. So many of the results that came up are marked “unknown”, so I imagine you could be extremely helpful in this way, even without going into the field.

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Also, here’s a link to a list of ways that anyone (with a computer) can help make iNaturalist a better place So many ways we can contribute to this valuable resource!

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