Modifying early rough place boundary on large area

There is a problem on this:

I’d like to modify the place, too rough for Taiwan island, created in the early days by someone.

The boundry which is part of Taiwan (place_id:7887) is already built by QGIS but the place area is out of my curator’s permission.

Is there a way to correct this kind of problem?

There may be so many observations in the place that it requires staff permission to edit?

There should be a standard place for Taiwan from GADM I would think. Looks like it is here:
Though this doesn’t include some parts of the island for some reason.

It looks like the user that created the original place is long gone and was hardly ever active. Are there any projects using that place that would be affected by changing the boundaries?

I’d love it if there could be a way to change old boundaries! This “midwest” boundary is very frustrating. There’s debate about what’s the “midwest” but nobody would think that including half of Iowa and part of West Virginia is the midwest.


I believe this is the standard place for Taiwan:

This place could be deleted, but there are several dozen associated projects so I would not recommend doing that. You would first have to get all those project admins to change the place they are using.

These both appear to be standard places.

This place is too large to be edited by anyone but staff, but I doubt they will step in to moderate definitions of the “Midwest.” I think most people would consider IA in the Midwest, and some people may consider WV to be as well. There are also associated projects. See:

I’m the one who started the flag, so I understand the whole process. I just want to continue to bring attention to it. Having good places makes identifying in regions where people have expertise a lot smoother.

I don’t think anyone considers WV (let alone NC which has a coastline!!!) to be the midwest. Going with the wikipedia definition which links under the “about section” under the place would be a good start.


If you would like to suggest a change in site policy, you should create a feature request.

1 Like

shouldn’t you be able to just merge this into the standard place? (shouldn’t doing so convert all the projects over to the standard place? i can’t really think of any reason not to merge the places, if it’s possible – unless maybe there are indexing stresses.)

yes, this is the country-level place

this is the boundary of the old Taiwan province that is effectively the main island minus the special administrative areas. since some changes in the government a decade or two (or several?) back, i don’t think the province actually exists as a thing anymore, or if it does, i don’t think it actually administers anything. (so i think this iNat place is an anachronism at this point.)


The two places :

user created:


are somewhat different when it comes to the outlying islands and ocean area that they encompass. There are sure to be many fewer observations in these regions, but still probably enough differences that they might mess something up with someone’s project if the place were changed without notification.

I don’t think it’s been determined yet exactly why the user created Taiwan place isn’t editable?

Unfortunately, no. Curators can’t merge anything into standard places. I suppose that would be considered editing them with how things like checklists are carried over.

Also unfortunately, no. This would be worth a feature request though. Right now a merged place just gets deleted from any projects that use it.

I can edit it. At least I can open the edit window. I didn’t try to save any changes.

Hmm @chengte can you clarify what you meant by

Since merging into a standard place would break the projects using this place, this doesn’t seem a good option.

I guess it could be possible to contact project owners and ask them to switch to the standard Taiwan place - some of them might want to as it is more accurate? But this would be a lot of work.

I want to correct this unclear place area to match the place name “Taiwan Island”. For the project manager used Taiwan island(place_id:131031) will use the correct place boundary for their purpose.

are you trying to define Taiwan Island as just the main island?

you can get close by including Taiwan (7887) and then excluding Fujian (97294) and Penghu (46480). there are a few small islands in Taitung and Pingtung that still are included. there are community-created places for these islands, but you can’t really use those places to effectively exclude obscured observations. (you’d have to alter or make new places for these islands that have much bigger boundaries than the boundaries than those of the existing places. it might be a good idea to do this anyway because filtering only for those places won’t return obscured observations either.)

Thank your opinion.

But my point is that correcting the rough boundary of palce_id:131031 made by the early-joined and inactive user.

As a curator, I could not fix the boundary by modifying and reload it. This rough boundary place effect the map function(see the picture). Is it possible to change the kml of it? Or The problem need website admin to fix? orz

Taiwan island → “台灣島” (the last but one)

i think the system is probably working as designed, but yes, you would probably need iNat staff to change that place because it would contain too many observations.

the question in my mind is whether staff would make the change? without knowing why the place was created the way it was, i bet they would be hesitant to make such a change.

so as i noted in my previous post, your best bet to achieve whatever your underlying goal is might be to use a combination of place inclusion and place exclusion.

1 Like

Yes, in general iNat is pretty conservative about changing places (ie, changes to user-created places are made fairly infrequently without their consent). Users are allowed to create places within the rules (even if they don’t align with commonly used places). In some cases, it might make sense to change the name of a place to avoid confusion, but leave the borders intact.

But changing place borders for a place that is currently in use for several dozen projects without the consent of those project users does not seem like a good idea to me. It could cause lots of problems for those projects.

Since there are already other places that have quite accurate borders for Taiwan as listed above, the need to edit this place is unclear to me.

Thanks all! To minimize the effect on projects used the place. I temporarily change the name to fit the place border as 台灣島、綠島、蘭嶼及澎湖群島 (Taiwan Island, Green Island, Orchid Island and Penghu islands). Maybe it is the way to avoid mismatch between the unclear border and place name.