R package rinat. User experiences?

As a scientist using both R and iNaturalist, I was excited to see that there is an R package for iNat, rinat. I see that there are several papers published recently using it, which is a good sign. I would appreciate hearing from anyone who has recent experience using it. What have you found it useful for? What do you wish it did that it doesn’t? What problems have you had with it?

I see that there is some discussion of it here on the forum, but all at least two years old, which is an eternity for a package under active development. Thank you.


See this thread for a discussion (about 9 months old):

In general, rinat is outdated, using only the v1 iNat API. It is still being (slowly) worked on at ropensci (https://github.com/ropensci/rinat). In general, if you are wanting to do biodiversity work with iNat data, working with the data exported to GBIF via GBIF tools (e.g., rgbif) which are better developed and maintained.


I find it easier to interface directly with the API or use the rgbif package and limit it to iNaturalist data using the publisher or dataset fields https://cran.r-project.org/web/packages/rgbif/index.html

If you’re a researcher using iNaturalist data, just keep in mind the citation guidelines https://www.inaturalist.org/pages/help#cite
rinat doesn’t generate a citable doi, unlike using gbif, but unfortunately, if you’re using non-research grade images you’ll have to supplement from the API. Typically what I do in those cases is to cite the largest possible GBIF export and then stick the resulting full dataset I used from the API into a repository

1 Like

Thank you! May 2020 feels like so long ago, but you are right it is only nine months.

That’s what I needed. Thank you!

This topic was automatically closed 60 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.