Procedure for contributing thousands of identified fungi photos?

I have an elderly friend who is an incredible photographer. He has amassed a magnificent digital collection of photos of North American fungi and would like to see them used in some way. Besides having a couple thousand that he has identified, he has more that he has not identified. if you are interested, kindly let me know so that I can communicate with him.

Mike Krebill


Hello Mike, welcome to the forum!

I would suggest reaching out to to ask about help with handling mass uploads. It’s been done before in certain cases. Also I’m pretty sure there’s a thread somewhere where people talk about their uploading procedures, but I can’t find it.

Also, I’m curious, will your friend be creating his own account, with you managing it? Or some other arrangement?


I’m also curious if the photos are all geotagged. If not this would be massively difficult to upload.

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I guess there’re lots of people with thousands of photos to upload, it’s a personal stuff to decide if the uploading is needed, I don’t quite understand the part about being interested. If you want them to be uploaded tell your friend to create an account or create it for him if he’s agree, just don’t upload them on your account.

FYI, if he wants every pixel preserved online, iNaturalist may not be his best option. @tiwane was it you who mentioned a limit of ~ 2000 pixels on the longest side.

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@mikekrebill just to flesh out and summarize in 1 place:

  • adding these data to the site is both fine under site rules and sounds like a great idea

  • one thing the site has been very clear about is they do not want to be a general data repository for nature data. They really want (and require) that records be under the name of the person who observed them.

  • this means that an account for your friend would need to be created in his name. Not adding the records under your account. Who controls the account, has access to the password etc is a matter for you and your friend to work out. You doing the work on his behalf on his account is fine

  • with regards the unidentified records, dont expect too many to get identified here. Fungi have among the lowest rates of id on the site. If your friend was a fungi enthusiast, they will know how hard species ID can be fro photo etc. Still put them in, but be realistic about what will become of them

  • in terms of the easiest way to do it, the answer to that is it depends on what condition the files are in. If the photos have either tags or the species name (scientific or common does not matter) in them, that will get picked up on upload and a species id added. It gets the occasional thing crazily wrong, but works pretty well.If the files dont have this but say are organized in folders by species, it may be best to do one folder at a time and then you can use the bulk edit feature to set the ID on all before initiating the upload

  • another big issue is geography, if the photos re not geotagged, then assuming you know where they were taken locations need to be added. Records with no location can be added to the site, but they can not reach what is called research grade status, which is effectively a community validated record. Again if needed, there are bulk update tools where you can assign the same location to multiple records either at or even after upload time.

  • please note there is no globally accepted or even centrally accepted ‘master’ source of fungi taxonomy, so the species names used by your friend may not match what are used on the site. Hopefully it is a minor issue though.


Thank you all for your answers to the question about my friend’s fungi photos. I will need to relay those on to him and give him time to consider iNaturalist. Currently, I am working on a book and facing deadlines, so this may have to wait.


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