Representative pictures not showing on all species pages

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Platform (Android, iOS, Website): website

App version number, if a mobile app issue (shown under Settings or About):

Browser, if a website issue (Firefox, Chrome, etc) : Chrome

URLs (aka web addresses) of any relevant observations or pages:

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Description of problem (please provide a set of steps we can use to replicate the issue, and make as many as you need.): click on link provided and see if that works

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Hi @botaneek, welcome to the forum. Adding a third photo resolved the issue, this is what it looked like:


Looks like Dupontia has the same issue
And another: Gaimardia
Not just random plants, here’s a shark genus with the bug: Glyphis

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the issue here is that the photos have moved from the private photo bucket ( to the AWS open data bucket (, and the taxon page photo references / links have not been updated.

for example, the Gaimardia page wants to use as its main photo, but the photo currently exists as (here is the associated observation for easy reference: .)


It is not only on the taxon pages, but also in comments and journal pages: see

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This is a side effect of some image cleanup, mentioned in this post. We’re starting to clean up old copies of photos that were migrated to the Amazon Open Dataset and looks like that’s surfacing an indexing issue with some taxa. It appears that for taxa that have no new observations in the last few months, the data the taxon pages are drawing from have stale and now incorrect image URLs. Reindexing these taxa should fix that (I’ve fixed the 3 that were mentioned). I’ll make sure the rest get reindexed soon.


Found another one

Yeah, this is seriously frustrating. I have over 80 journal posts scattered across various projects. Most of them are identification guides or explanations of plant morphology. As such, at least half of them have embedded iNaturalist photos. Now, every one I’ve looked at so far has a broken link. I really wish I had known about this before the end of summer break. Now, I have no idea how long it will be until I can get them fixed.

not sure if you were just expressing frustration or asking for a particular action item here, but if you didn’t see this other post, this seems to be the recommended best practice:

i’m not one who does a lot of embedding of photos, but if that’s really a common practice, and it’s going to happen regardless, it might be worth trying to find a technology-mediated compromise between embedding images and linking to photo pages and observations. for example, maybe instead of putting something like an explicit image reference in your journals, there could be a way to reference and display photos and observations via some sort of iNat-sanctioned markup syntax – just for example, something like <photo:1234>. that kind of thing would be a feature request, though, i suppose.

Honestly, I’m partially venting. Something like an “iNat-sanctioned markup syntax” or the ability to upload photos directly to journal posts would give me a lot of piece of mind, but still means changing every photo in my journal posts which is extremely frustrating and something I may not have time for at this point in my life.

Using journal posts has been the most effective way I’ve found to communicate identification information to other people using iNaturalist and simply attaching URLs is not very effective for that purpose. The key is being able to see photos from different observations side-by-side. This is essential to effectively showing the differences of various structures or various species.

If the following is the position we’re going to have to deal with moving forward than this really disrupts my ability to do what I mentioned above.

What this tells me is that the ID guides I made are not only broken but also potentially unstable. I’ve spent many, many hours on those things and now I’m going to have to figure out whether I try to transpose them to some other format, keep them where they’re at and repair them as they break, or just try to print PDF copies, abandon them, let them break, and share the PDF as people want it somewhere outside of iNaturalist.

Worse than that, this renders any method that uses embedded images from a URL unstable. Unless there’s some fancy way around this that I’m not familiar with, this means I can’t use images from iNaturalist without downloading and uploading directly. That essentially eliminates the possibility creating the identification resources I’ve been creating in iNaturalist directly with the currently available resources.

3 posts were split to a new topic: Lag in taxon photo chooser