Observations 'voted' as wild

I’m having trouble with this observation: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/91779586. It’s getting voted as ‘not wild’ and therefore remains ‘casual’. I see several threads about such things and it seems to me from them that an escape (‘choosing to be where it is’) should be categorized as wild. They’ve moved on now but this group was in the area for about a week, roaming freely through woods and fields.

Hi @alwebb - welcome to the iNaturalist forum! I would recommend using the comments section on the observation to describe why you think these are wild birds. If you click on the number next to the downvote, you can view who voted that way and @ mention their username to ensure they will get notified.


If you don’t add comments clarifying they’re not captive birds it’s an observation right on the property and of domestic species that probably can roam the same way regular chicken do in villages while still being captive, so that’s why people are voting it as not wild.


Agree with @marina_gorbunova You should add the info you put in your comment here on the forum to your observation. Without that info, I can see why IDers would look at that pic and location and assume captive.


I you find more observations like this, please add them to my project:


Is the project just for animals, and if so do you know if there is a similar one for plants?

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The term “wild” is really problematic, and as it’s the only choice that would try to capture the range of naturalized, feral, introduced-elsewhere-but-spread-here, etc., I agree that for now it’s good to just add notes.

Any researcher can then just refer to those notes if they’re concerned about including it, but I also think that anyone doing a study of biodiversity would have to make those decisions for a whole bunch of taxa, regardless of how they’re coded (or in iNat’s case, voted).

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A number of people here are recommending you use comments to explain that these are in fact wild-living, but I actually think this is a perfect example of what kinds of things should go into the Notes section while making an observation. The Notes sections is soooooooooooooo poorly utilized, but is soooooooooo useful. See a similar example of a boundary case wild/non-wild plant I observed here (https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/82430080), with explanation of my reasoning for classifying it as wild.


I second the use of notes but, if you add them after the fact, it is still good to make a comment and tag the people that voted it as not wild. Those voting it as not wild should possibly also comment as to why they mark it if not positive or ask in a comment if it is wild. I’ve marked quite a few plants as not wild but I ask if I’m not sure.

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By comment we mean description of observation, initially, now it’s needed to be added in comments section.

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If I looked at this record without knowing anything else, and knowing how guinea fowl wander around some homes, I’d assume captive (not feral, not wild). As others have said, adding notes that these birds have been wandering far and wide and seem to be on their own would clarify that they are indeed feral, which translates to a “wild” observation for iNat purposes.


My project is just for animals. I don’t know of a similar project for plants but there might be one.

I just added a graylag goose adopted by a flock of Canada geese to your project!

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All this discussion is very helpful, thanks.

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