Problems adding species to Places' existing or new checklists

Platform: Website. Browser: Chrome. Problem description: iNat Places each have an existing all-wildlife checklist. There are two options to add species to them to function like a checklist for a taxonomic group like bees: (1) add spp. directly to existing Place lists, or (2) create additional checklists in lists and add spp. there.

Issues with method 2

  • Whenever multiple lists are created and list the same spp., they display twice in Identify Suggestions when set to “checklist.” For example, many Hylaeus genus species in Hawaii display twice, since HI had a Place checklist and Nature serve had made a HI checklist.


  • Some species fail to add to new lists, with error message: “not in taxon bees” (parent taxon), even if they were already added to the default Place list correctly and their taxon page taxonomy is correct.

  • Another limitation is RG obs. don’t auto-add spp. to separately-created checklists (unlike for method 1), I think.

Issues with method 1

  • When filter searching the list for bees (taxon search box) and then adding new spp., some don’t get categorized under “bees” somehow, so can only been seen if filter searching their name specifically in the whole list. This itself doesn’t affect Identify (all still show) but makes it difficult to find and be aware of all the spp. when inside the Place list.

Other related:

  • Some countries have multiple Places, which I wonder if could also create duplicate-related or other problems, e.g. Guam.

  • Will spp. duplicates occur in Identify checklist-Suggestions if spp. are added to both a Place’s checklist (e.g. country) and to the checklist of a separate constituent Place? (e.g. county, state, island, region)

Summary and suggestions

  • To avoid all current problems (if nothing changes), using method 1 seems (currently) best, and has the advantage of being synced to RG obs., which add additional new spp. whenever observed. Yet using method 1 alone may cause problems with constituent Places’ lists, and some spp. don’t get categorized into their parent taxon when added to any Place list. Finally, some Places are listed multiple times or missing.

  • In the interest of checklists having a positive effect on Identify, it would be best to determine what to do now and if any later changes if planned would change anything. We’d mostly like to avoid any checklist work done now needing to be redone/deleted later.

Additional different-Place examples of duplicates:

I just recently discovered checklists and wasn’t aware of them before. They look like a useful tool for identifiers. I came across this blog post with proposed changes: https://www.inaturalist.org/blog/43337-upcoming-changes-to-lists

Can someone from the admin side of things comment on where this stands? It seems that phase 3 and 4 are still in the works? Will they happen? If yes, then creating checklists like this for places may be a moot point at this time and it might be better to wait until the new ones are rolled out.

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This is also an issue with bees of Pennsylvania. A new checklist was created with all PA bees. If you use the “compare” button and then have “source” = checklist then species that exist in both checklists occur twice in the results.

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Good suggestions, although this bug report isn’t moot regardless of if we end up using this method to create lists, because it’s affecting all list including those others created already. I also have come across bugs when simply adding species to the default all-wildlife list each Place already has. When I filter search within a Place’s all wildlife list for bees and add all the species I need to complete a list, often some don’t get categorized (can’t be searched) under bees. They have to be searched in the main list of all taxa by genus or species name, which makes them difficult to find. So, we seem to be encountering technical issues with either of the two methods (adding to all wildlife lists, or creating separate lists).