"Seen nearby"... but is it?

Please fill out the following sections to the best of your ability, it will help us investigate bugs if we have this information at the outset. Screenshots are especially helpful, so please provide those if you can.

Platform (Android, iOS, Website):


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


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

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

Screenshots of what you are seeing (instructions for taking a screenshot on computers and mobile devices: https://www.take-a-screenshot.org/):

Description of problem (please provide a set of steps we can use to replicate the issue, and make as many as you need.):

While uploading, I was checking the CV and the top suggestion was supposedly “seen nearby”. So, I clicked on the range to see where it’s actually been observed and I find that it’s been observed nowhere nearby. Not even close. This is the only instance of this I’ve experienced so I’ll make note if it happens ever again, but I found this really strange. I also started the observation process over, and tried uploading again after closing out of the app, and it happened again with the same picture and same species. I included the image I’m trying to upload for the observation above, and the location is Devil’s Hole State Park in Niagara Falls, NY, in case anybody wants to see if that will have the same result on another device. I don’t know how y’all do your troubleshooting for this kinda thang.

Step 1: Make observation.

Step 2: Check CV.

Step 3: Hopefully not experience this.


My guess is that it’s because there was one quite close that was bumped up to genus a few months ago.


Oh, I do love a mystery and a good bit of detective work:)

That’s interesting. Is it supposed to do that? Seems weird for it to consider it “seen nearby” still when there was just the one close by. I feel like it isn’t supposed to work that way but I certainly could be wrong.

Supposed to do what? Include a taxon with only a single nearby observation? Or include a taxon that was bumped a few months ago? According to the help page, a single observation is enough, and the data should be refreshed “about once every two months”. So I don’t think there’s a bug here, but I will also note that I can’t reproduce it in the web uploader – visually similar yes, but not seen nearby.

1 Like

iNat takes just one. One obs. One ID. Doesn’t even have to be CID and 2 agree.
iNat is a little … optimistic, and often deceptive. Another reason why I chew thru weird distribution maps. It only takes one to encourage more.


Optimistic and a little reckless.


The single observation was what I was referring to for the “supposed to” part. Your explanation makes a lot of sense and clears up that it was less of a bug and more of a faulty (my opinion) system, but deliberately built that way. Thanks!

1 Like

but I would have expected the Just The One to at least be CID and Research Grade

1 Like

According to the help text, it does need to be RG (or would be RG if not captive). If you find ones that don’t meet the requirements, please report them, keeping in mind the time lag to refresh the data.


A post was split to a new topic: Using computer vision to find suggestions not seen nearby